So this week and last week I've been playing with the algorithm for the Wish shopping app (reputedly quite an aggressive miner of what you're searching) This thread shows the baseline from installing the app. #MScEDC 1/4
These notifications showed up soon after downloading it. Looks like it could have picked up on the news story above, or is it just a guess based on what the UK are searching for? Is it a result of me posting many, many bog roll related memes on my Facebook? 2/4 pic.twitter.com/e7RzkYso0P
The home screen goes on forever, but I'm going to assume the first couple of "pages" represent its best guess at what I might be interested in buying. 1st page. Clearly knows nothing about me. Magnets are pretty cool though 3/4 pic.twitter.com/jsEVvso8HL
Second screen is already looking desperate. I wonder why it thinks I'm really into lasers? Also spy gadgets by the look of things. Over the next few days I'm going to Google a lot of Cyberpunk terms and search the Wish app for Xmas stuff. Let's see what happens 4/4 pic.twitter.com/s3XMWu1Wre
This sort of messing about is right up my street, but where to begin? I don’t want to mess up the existing results for something like my Facebook, Google, Alexa, Amazon, eBay and so on, so I thought I’d try downloading something new and having a mess with that.
Leaping straight towards the most dubious option I could think of, I’ve installed Wish, a shopping app that sells dubious things unfettered by the need for copyright, trademarks, and similar consumer protections. If you want knock-off Lego, things that are photographed to make them look life size but are actually tiny, or gadgets that claim to be able to pick locks or block wifi, then Wish is the place to go!
I have no intention of ever buying anything from Wish, that would be ridiculous. I did give it a bit of a place to start by logging in with my Google account. I don’t really use my Google account for much, but have recently used it to set up Pinterest, Pocket, IFTTT and other things relevant to this course.
I’m going to have a look and see what sort of things it thinks I might want to buy, and then use Google to search for lots of cyberpunk things and see how that affects the “merchandise” that Wish shows me.
I get the feeling that this could go terribly wrong and that I may need some sort of mind bleach by the time I’m finished…