Your host decides to follow back a Joy Division T-shirt that is following him around the internet. Plus the surveillance that powers behaviorally targeted personalized advertising.


12 comments on Honeypot

  1. Brian Hunt says:

    I use a raspberry pi based DNS ad blocker called pi-hole
    It’s an open source software project that doesn’t Accept ad company bribes.
    My router is set to use it as the DNS server. It checks dns requests against a block list then drops requests that match then forwards any thing that isn’t blocked.
    About 25% of my daily traffic would be ads.
    It also blocks Microsoft’s “telemetry” that sends them data. Such as keystrokes,p programs installed and web traffic.
    It’s very low latency or trouble. It does raise hell with some things that want to track like the Microsoft application store.

  2. elise thorburn says:

    hi benjamen. i tried twittering you but i am really not good at it. i’m a researcher looking at surveillance technology in the form of “electronic monitoring” – particularly how it moves through the prison into other areas of social life. in effect, these surveillance technologies and other more benign seeming ones, import a logic of the prison – a carceral logic! – onto everyday life.

    anyway, i think this could really be interesting on your podcast. if you wanna talk about it in more detail i’d love to chat and talk about some of the research findings i have.
    love love love your show sorry for sounding like a social media newb/boring academic. (not boring, i swear)

  3. Kendra says:

    I actually work for a digital marketing firm in the US, and can tell you that it is entirely possible that the ad agency knew you had been to Barney’s. All you had to do was use an app on your phone that has location data and also sells data to marketers (an alarming number of them). That data comes with a device ID that uniquely identifies your phone and can be linked to the cookie Barneys probably dropped on one of your devices. Tada, they know you’ve been to the store.

  4. Jason Vogel says:

    I have always thought that the Web pages could be designed to not constantly jump around and cause a “mis-click”. I assumed that the touch screens sensed the coming finger and shifted the page to what it wanted you to click. My 11 year old son was listening with me, he says the advertisers are cheating.
    Just because you are paranoid, doesn’t mean they aren’t after you…..

  5. David says:

    Advertisement Space

    I’m locked in a cage,
    & I can get out.
    If only I knew where this prison ended,
    I could step outside.
    But you are everywhere
    & moving into nowhere fast.

    Maybe out on the ocean
    I might find blissful Dark.
    Away from blind watchful eyes
    Lurking, disclosing my kind, my essence
    To any bidder

    Who is bidding to suck me dry.

    Secreting my own prison
    A spider caught in its own web
    But I never was and will be a spider

    Cut me loose, somebody, anybody!?
    Nobody answers.

    “All caught in a hidden camera loop
    Please click this ad!
    AND Satisfy…

    You still here?! Go on, get on, secrete some dollar soup.
    And we will finish this infinite loop.”

  6. Alex says:

    I don’t have twitter otherwise I would have sent you this on there, Benjamen, but I found an MFA art project that looks at targeted advertising that you might like.

    I have some friends who were in the MFA Design & Technology at Parson’s and through them, I ended up scrolling the @mfadt twitter site and I saw a thesis project called “Opt Out” by Lama Shehadeh…

    Lama describes it as follows:

    “Opt Out is a speculative design project that critiques the harvesting of personal and behavioral data within the current infrastructure of advertising technology. It is a 4 week experiment (April 2016) I conducted on myself to challenge the subtleness of targeted ads through a printed catalog.

    Opt Out aims to raise awareness for internet users who are oblivious to the layers of surveillance attached to online advertising. It calls for an urgency to rewire the framework of the current ad technology. ”

    project website:

    youtube video describing the project (sort of):

  7. Zoe Michael says:

    Re: Surveillance thoughts for this series
    Have you read the play GROUNDED by George Brant? It is about a fighter pilot who comes back to duty after having a baby and is asked to control a remote drone instead of flying anymore. It turns into a twisted tragedy about what happens to you when you become the eye in the sky. It was recently turned into a film, which I haven’t seen, but the script itself is breathtaking.

  8. Angus McC says:

    The assignment to visualize how surveillance is actually structured is such a good one! This whole series is really excellent..

    Here’s one quotation to throw into the ring
    “The territory of occupation is green-screened territory, madly assembled and conjectured by zapping, copy-paste operations, incongruously keyed in, ripped, ripping apart, breaking lives and heart. It is a space governed not only by 3-D sovereignty, but 4-D sovereignty because it occupies time, a 5-D sovereignty because it governs the virtual, and an n-D sovereignty from above, beyond, accross – in Dolby Surround. Time asynchronously crashes into space; accumulating by spasms of capital, despair, a desire running wild.” Hito Steyerl

    Also, i’d recommend checking out – a mood board for the technologies and combinations that constitute military/institutional power. Leans towards the techno, and definitely supports the imagination.

  9. Jon says:

    A bit of solace can be taken in the ineffectiveness of the persistent ads- the ads most likely to stalk me from website to website are usually for the last things I’ve purchased. Not likely that I’ll be needing another room to rent in Buksvallarne soon.

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