That's how I knew that you don't know me. And you're still creepy....

by Michael S. Kaplan, published on 2011/10/24 07:01 -04:00, original URI: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/michkap/archive/2011/10/24/10229176.aspx


I drew a picture of you
you and your anchor tattoo
and saw the face that I knew
covered in shame.
You drew a bird that was here
a kind of sweet chanticleer
 but with a terrible fear
that the cage couldn't tame.

That's how I knew this story would break my heart—
when you wrote it.
That's how I knew this story would break my heart.

So, like a ghost in the snow
I'm getting ready to go
'Cause, baby, that's all I know—
how to open the door.
And though the exit is crude
it saves me coming unglued
for when you're not in the mood
for the gloves and the canvas floor.

That's how I knew this story would break my heart—
When you wrote it.
That's how I knew this story would break my heart

This blog you are reading here right now is, I will admit, not one I am entirely comfortable with.

It isn't about the song lyrics above, at all really. It is just what was playing when I finishing up the blog.

Though there is a passive thing that is vaguely topical for the song near the end, though it would be a huge stretch to call the story a heart breaker.

In any case, it isn't the thing I'm uncomfortable about that this blog is referring to.

It's about the targeted ads that are used by Facebook.

Now I admit I mostly find them amusing, though this due to a personal policy of mine:

  1. I hide my "likes" on my Facebook profile;
  2. I make sure that for every three things I genuinely "like", I add one that I really don't.

These first policy is to make sure that my friends don't use the unusual and inconsistent nature of my "likes" as proof that I'm deranged when they would otherwise see lots of my likes that the second policy inspires.

It's an imperfect system, mind you. I mean, some of my weird likes will bleed over and people will see them from time to time.

On the other hand, my actual likes can sometimes catch people unaware, so I don't worry about it too much.

That isn't what is making me uncomfortable.

I have noticed that it is doing more than using my "likes" to find out about me.

It pays attention to networks I belong to, like when Amazon job ads point how more convenient work would be in South Lake Union than my commute to the East side.

No doubt this is gleaned imperfectly since I live on the East side but come downtown a lot, and I work for Microsoft which is mostly on the East side.

Silly, to be sure, especially since a little info exists on my profile that clearly indicates I live on the East side, no matter how many nights I try to avoid ending up there sometimes.

But hardly a big deal.

That also isn't what is making me uncomfortable.

From a schooling perspective, I list two high schools, only one of which I graduated from but both of them list same graduating year, despite them being 363 miles away from each other.

And although I have some college (spread across three states, four schools, and ten years), I have exactly *zero* college degrees, though I do have some (now long expired) credentials as a phlebotomist, CMA, and most of an R. EEG/EP T. Plus for purposes of Facebook, none of this post high school schooling/credentials are listed.

I also have Multiple Sclerosis, as regular readers no doubt know.

And I obviously work for Microsoft, thus the location of my Blog.

So I don't know entirely what to make of the most recent bunch of ads that seemed targeted on three different possible meanings of M.S.:

This is frankly kind of creeping me out.

Now I do claim to like some universities and colleges, though mostly they are schools that people I was dating were at, or ones I visited to see friends. Maybe I was guessing I had a degree that I wasn't claiming? It still seems odd.

But those who see my events I go to know that I go out a lot, and have lots of female friends, a few of (but not most of!) whom I have even dated or wanted to date, and none of whom claim any sort of disability.

Of course I'm still single, so maybe Facebook's targeted ad system is suggesting I'll have more luck changing my hunting grounds?

Perhaps it is the just the dating service's website that thinks so.

The closest I perhaps ever came to dating someone who also has a disability, I didn't answer an email sent more than five years prior and didn't connect her to the woman I later met until almost 48 hours later.

I'm pretty sure I let that one slip away!

Anyway, for some reason I find some of these ads make me pretty uncomfortable, and not just because they don't seem to apply at all to me but because a combination of Facebook's targeting and the advertisers' targets all seem to make it appear several others are thinking I'm someone I'm not....


cheong00 on 24 Oct 2011 9:32 PM:

You know, I found it amazing that there's at least one kind of MS not included:

• Mobile Suit, better known as Gundam.

Please let me know if there's any kind of model maker or DVD ADs pops up. :P

gc on 2 Aug 2012 12:27 AM:

I work at MS, my wife has MS, I found your blog researching purple badges, and I love Aimee Mann. Small world!


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