Rachel Beckman of the Washington Post writes about her experiences with Facebook demographic targeting.
After my quaint status update about the muffin top ad, Facebook got even more vicious, like a schoolyard bully provoked by my initial reaction. With the knowledge that I was engaged to be married, the site splashed an ad across the left side of the screen playing into a presumed vulnerability. Do you want to be a fat bride? You’d better go to such-and-such Web site to learn how to lose weight before the big day.
. . .
I assumed that the diet ads would subside after I changed my relationship status from “engaged” to “married” in May. They did. I now receive these:
“Trying to get pregnant? Visit our site now. We’re a national network of fertility specialists treating male and female infertility.”
Ouch. I am reminded of the time Facebook tried to hook me up with an alternate wife.