A little bit freaky to me (seeing ads for products on other websites)

How does something I looked at on a separate page end up being ad info on NFL.com page?

I was looking at tires and prices, specially the specific tire I am interested in. Then I go back to open page of NFL.com and there is my tire.

Some kind of detail tracking going on that I dont like I think.

1 Like

They are stalking us too man.

Why? They want to trigger us to buy crap.

It won't work though.

Here's how it works: There are two or three big "ad exchanges" on the Internet. Google owns the biggest one - NFL.com uses it. Facebook I believe is the second biggest. To opt into one, you take a bit of code from the ad exchange and put that code in the footer of your website - so all pages that someone visits load that bit of code.

Your tire website and NFL.com are on the same ad exchange. What happened is that when you indicated interest in a product on the tire website by visiting the web page of a product, an "advertising order" was automatically placed against a budget the tire website created to re-market that product to you for a few days afterwards. It makes sense: What better indicator of interest in a product than you taking a look at it? It's a smart advertising spend.

This process is called "remarketing". The technology behind it is actually very simple and isn't very complex at all.


Use Mozilla Firefox as your browser. Install uBlock ad blocker. No ads to deal with.


Also FYB, I am thinking you broke the internet. Again. :cowboy_hat_face:

Great information given above :+1:

Here's the freakiest for me.

After shopping at the store and buying a certain brand of salsa, no phone on me no FB on my phones and FB via a burner email at that, I get ads for that same brand later that day. :flushed:

And I never see such ads!

The only link I could think of was metadata via either my credit card or my supermarket savings card that became associated to my geographic location and IP address.

It might be prudent to get a VPN before too long. And not in true name.

thanks for that Sully. Still would prefer it didnt happen but.....

It's possible that the practice becomes illegal in the future, but I think that remains unlikely.

1 Like

I am just guessing, but I expect they use saved ip addresses to be able to do this. If so, then I wonder if that doesnt mean they can use ip to get personal info from peoples providers?

No, not your IP address - it's not reliable enough. What's used is called a browser fingerprint; before your web browser loads a page, it supplies the website hosting the page with a bunch of info that it needs to give you a response: Your preferred language (EN / FR / whatever), the fonts available on your computer, what plug-ins your browser supports, and so on.

It turns out that a list of 15 to 30 of those things creates a pretty unique combination - a unique fingerprint, even. This fingerprint changes less often that your IP address does (it changes every 7 days or so usually) so it's far better to use to target and track you across the web.

1 Like

Clear your browsing history, cookies and internet cache. I use a program called CCleaner which cleans up all kinds of internet debris and trackers on my PC.


I think once you browse a site, it is out of your hands, as far as this topic goes

Correct - your browser history, cookies and cache won't affect the browser fingerprint you leave.

1 Like

Does this mean we are all doomed for good even after COVID-19 however long that takes? :open_mouth:

Only a new privacy law could change this tactic, but I don't think it's coming - the practice flies under the radar pretty good.

1 Like

Sully, does the EU already have such a law such that is opt-in though? I know they put into effect some new laws over there earlier this year, but I am unclear on the details because I don't sell to the EU countries.

That would be the new GPDR law; it's interesting and maybe a grey area. Browser fingerprinting can identify you as an individual but it doesn't know who you actually are (there's no name or e-mail address attached to your fingerprint).

GPDR generally focuses on what kind of data companies retain about your identity... but there's an argument that it also focuses on the ability of a company to single you out on the Web (source). It might be decided by the first court case on the subject.

1 Like

I was recently speaking to a facility manager who was explaining the new industrial floor cleaners his company was using, and how it was saving his company money.

A few hours later, advertising appeared on my phone for industrial floor cleaners. Never seen them before, and have never looked up anything like that either.
Seriously considered throwing my phone into the river after that one

1 Like

...that’s pretty creepy

...I heard a while back this one: Cadillac offers ‘driver alert’ tech in their new cars, a dash cam that focuses on the driver and has facial recognition software, it’s sold as a safety function as it can identify and issue an alert warning when it sees the driver is dozing off or looking at a cell phone...what Caddy didn’t tell you though is that if you’re stopped at a light, and you gaze for a while out your side window it will pinpoint your location via GPS, send a notification to one of those ad places sully mentioned and they’ll cross-reference where you were and what you might have been looking at and if it was at potentially one of their subscribing companies they’ll start forcing ads from that company into your social media feeds...

1 Like

Psst . . . heard you might be in the market for one of these:

:eye: :ear:

1 Like