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Category: Advertising

Fear is a powerful motivator in propaganda messaging: How its used to sell third party solar

Fear is a powerful motivator in propaganda messaging: How its used to sell third party solar

Third party companies offer to install solar PV arrays on your home and promise to save you money on your monthly electric utility costs. Bloomberg found they use a mix of false assertions, lies, cherry picking and fear as sales methods, to persuade homeowners to sign up and lease the solar PV system for decades. Over time, the lease costs increase such that the homeowner spends far more in the future, while the third party company collects large government subsidies. Few homeowners understand what they got in to. When they go to sell their home, the lease is transferred to the buyer – in effect, TPO solar PV arrays become a dead weight on the home’s future sales potential, particularly to informed buyers who understand the game.

How online news manipulates your perspectives on events by running the same story each day

How online news manipulates your perspectives on events by running the same story each day

Have you noticed that many online news web sites – both newspapers and TV stations – will run a news story and then leave it prominently on their web page for days – even weeks? The stories are typically ones that inflame reader or viewer emotions – and the effect of turning them into semi-permanent stories is to distort the perception of the importance of the story. The primary purpose is likely “click-bait” to drive advertising clicks, but they may also distort the public’s perception on important policy issues.

How marketing propaganda persuades us to buy stuff we often do not need

How marketing propaganda persuades us to buy stuff we often do not need

We are surrounded by marketing propaganda that has enlisted networks of individuals posting online reviews. These ecosystems seem like organic grass roots “from the people” reviews. But most are marketing “astro turf” operations. That is, they are corporate sponsored activities designed to look like they are “from the people”.

Sourcing serious allegations from social media posts is never a good idea

Sourcing serious allegations from social media posts is never a good idea

An egregious example of badly sourcing one’s allegations from social media posts? This time, a political candidate published a list of victims of sexual assault, some of whom say they are not victims, and some who say they never gave permission for their name to be published on a public list. U.S. Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (ND) has apologized and appears to blame “victim advocates” for the error.

Facebook’s #Instagram is as privacy invasive as #Facebook

Facebook’s #Instagram is as privacy invasive as #Facebook

Log in to Instagram in a browser. Click on your profile icon at upper right. Click on the round, slightly gear shaped icon next to your channel name and “Edit Profile” button. Click on Privacy and Security option on the pop up menu. Page down and click on View Account Data. Here you can see that they record – forever – any current and former phone numbers and email addresses you have provided. They also record – forever – any…

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Automated detection of copyright violations on social media does not work

Automated detection of copyright violations on social media does not work

Source: Platform Censorship: Lessons From the Copyright Wars | Electronic Frontier Foundation I had two music publishers both claim copyright ownership of a music track in one of my videos. Obviously, both could not own the copyright. The music selection I used was written during the U.S. Civil War, decades before music was copyrightable, and the performance was by the U.S. Army with a specific license that it may be used by anyone for any purpose. I challenged the copyright…

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Google’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week

Google’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week

The week started off with an internal Google email from a high level manager describing how Google worked behind the scenes to attempt to get Clinton elected in 2016. A few days later, an internal Google meeting video appeared, showing executives behaving oddly, to say the least, after the 2016 election went for Trump, and suggesting that Google would uses its resources to manipulate voters to achieve Google’s desired outcomes. Ouch.