Friday the 13th: Notice any of these creepy online occurrences today?

facebook likes social media privacy adam jang unsplash

It’s Friday the 13th. It’s an infamously creepy day and all I’ve been thinking about are the odd things I notice whenever I’m signed in to Facebook or Google.

Can you relate?

If you can, let us know which one of these occurrences you’ve experienced online today.

  • Logging into Facebook and seeing an ad for something you Googled the previous day.
    Example: Curiously researching smoothie recipes and then seeing ads for juice blenders.
  • Waiting for a flight and being notified of a delay via Google before the airline even has time to make an announcement (flight number included!)
  • Facebook asks you to update information as if it knows you have new things going on in your life.
    Example: Starting a new job and, barely three days in, getting asked to update job information.
  • Google suggesting very accurate responses to emails.
    Example: Receiving a meeting schedule and being given varying options of “Thank you, see you there” to choose from.
  • Facebook also suggesting responses inside private chats on Messenger.
    Example: My mum telling me what’s for dinner and a ‘nom nom’ sticker appearing of its own accord.

While most of these occurrences are just clever ways apps work to optimise user experience, it still feels like my private information is actually quite public to a secret software community in some giant database.

So, no, these may not be supernatural, nor are they creepy events related to Friday the 13th. But doesn’t that make them even scarier?

Feature image: Adam Jang via Unsplash

Shereesa Moodley


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