Sunday, January 29, 2012

Old Soul?

Heh.

Google is doing its job keeping track of everything you and I do in its systems.

You can check out what Google thinks of your demographics here.

Google seems to think I am a 65+ year old man.

I'm speechless.

7 comments:

james said...

Hmm. My googling is from several different machines, and I use several google email addresses. If they keep track via cookies, I wonder if they accumulate the different cookies from the different machines and use one of my email accounts as a key.

Gringo said...

If you do not like Google keeping track of you, use Optimize Google, which stops the Google cookie. Unfortunately, Optimize Google is only for the Firefox browser.

I stopped using Google last month, except for challenging searches, when Google had some special social network ad taking over things. Be aware of all these great things we have for you, etc. etc. That annoyed me, so I decided to greatly reduce my use of Google. I use Google now mostly for Advanced Searches, where you want to find a phrase or word on a website. I still use Google Books when I need it, and used it today for a book on Graham Greene film reviews.

Ixquick is not as good as Google, but for cursory searches, when you just want to get to a website, it is OK.

james said...

On one machine google thinks I'm a man 55-65 (close enough) and on another it doesn't know who I am at all (this is _with_ a tab logged into a gmail account). Of course on that one I tend to only allow session cookies...

terri said...

James,

Good question. I have three gmail accounts. They must not coalesce all of my google information very efficiently or intuitively because I think my results would be very different otherwise. One of those e-mails is used exclusively for online shopping, predominately for women's clothing or sending flowers or children's clothing.

If Google combined all of my info in one place they would know just about everything about me between my blog, e-mail inboxes, web searches and browsing habits...it would be very easy to pin me down.

I'm actually surprised by how inaccurate the results are.

On the other hand it was accurate about my browsing habits...science sites, news sites, a smattering of health and business sites.

Maybe the results are accurate and I really do have the soul of a crotchety, 65+ man.

Gringo,

I usually use Safari. My husband uses Firefox but has been having problems with it ever since the latest update was put out.

I purposely don't use my full name in any online forum/social network/blog and I consciously think about making it difficult to track my personal information down.

At first I thought of this as a slightly paranoid streak in me. Now, after several years of watching family members argue through facebook, or being tracked down from people in their past that they would rather not hear from...I'm really glad I've done it.

Maybe that's why Google is so off about my profile...I haven't connected the dots for them.

Donna B. said...

Google is right about my age, but wrong about everything else. I'm not interested in any of the categories listed, especially body art!

Hilariously wrong.

terri said...

Donna,

It does surprise me how off it is. I guess automated, logarithmic demographic setting still has a long way to go!

Gringo said...

Terri, sounds as if you have protected yourself against Google.

The latest rounds of Firefox updates have been a problem. It takes about a week for the various add-ons to catch up. Firefox should delay the updates until major add-ons, like AdBlock, have changed their code to be compatible with the new Firefox edition.