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Intrusive data use

Real Estate Agent with Atlanta Communities 303302

Red Lights on a computerThe other day I was online and I was searching for information on home generators. I have always thought it would be cool to have one of these whole house dynamos that turns on with the slightest flicker of the power coming in to the house. That thing would fire up and instantly my home would shine like a beacon of hope for all the neighborhood to see! Never mind that in 30 years I can't recall the power being off for more than a few hours.

Well, I finished my search, decided $6,000+ was a bit high for insuring once every 50 years I had uninterrupted power, and moved on. Well, I thought I did. For the next month, every time I was online I saw adds for generators. Still do, just not as often.

When I did this search, a bit of information was stored on my computer. It is this bit of info that search sites read and determine adds to show me. I don't know about you, but I find it a bit creepy to check Face place on my phone and see ads from a search I did a week ago, and completely forgot about, but this is the new age of advertising.

Even my own CRM offers a way to do this. Once a potential client logs in and searches for something, my website can take over and follow them the rest of their lives, determined to never give them a moment of peace. It is apparently designed to drive the user crazy if they don't hire me and only me as their Realtor. I have not, however, turned on this sinister function. I find this type of advertising creepy and intrusive, but apparently someone out there found out it works. Just not with me. 

Oh look, an ad for a cool generator! Got to go check it out!

Posted by

Peter den Boer, Associate Broker, Realtor

Atlanta Communities Real estate Brokerage


Ph. 770.713.1545



I write about daily life as a Realtor in the Towne Lake Community in Woodstock Georgia.

Comments (6)

Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning Peter. Seems to be the trend these days. Search for something, find it, acauire it and see ads for the rest of your life. Deleting emails is now a major part of the morning only to see the ads in other places. Gotta go, ads coming in for stuff I no longer need. Enjoy your day!

Nov 10, 2020 04:38 AM
Kat Palmiotti
eXp Commercial, Referral Divison - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

Even more creepy.....  I was searching for something online, a Bissell carpet cleaner. A few minutes later my husband yells out from his office "Hey, are you searching for Bissell vacuums? I just got an ad for one!"

OMG, what if I want to buy him a GIFT?


Nov 10, 2020 05:32 AM
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Hi Peter den Boer - yes that generator will follow you around for a few weeks  By the way 6,000 is just the generator.  I have one.

Nov 10, 2020 06:00 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Pasadena And Southern California 818.516.4393

Hello Peter - I can "see" how your post might "generate" a lot of conversation.  Ah, if only I was a fly on the wall.  Wait - that's no longer necessary, right?  Talk about "bugging".  

Nov 10, 2020 06:02 AM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Private browsing is what we have turned on, and Safari keeps the trackers away.  We also clear our history once a week.  A

Nov 10, 2020 08:02 AM
Rocky Dickerson
Realty One Group - Las Vegas, NV
Superior Service!

Good morning Peter den Boer yeah, I get you. I have even gone to the lengths of using a second browser to shop on and then wipe the history just not to see the ads.

Nov 10, 2020 08:32 AM