When Did I Turn 60?

Facebook is aging me, and I am not sure why.  Its targeted advertising is adding three years to my age.  I am not happy about this, even though nobody is seeing it but me.  I am going public with this because I wanted to see if anybody else noticed something amiss with how FB is selling to them.

Long ago, when I signed up for Facebook, I put in my birth date, including the year.  After a scare in which some dirtbag from Wales hijacked both my gmail and Facebook accounts (long story), I changed my personal profile on Facebook to make it less revealing to the outside world.   I subtracted my family connections and a lot of other personal information and rigged it so other FB users can see my birthday but not the birth year.  But while FB gives us the option not to show our birth year in our public profile, it does not allow us to dodge putting it in our private profile — the one it uses for its targeted ads. 

So until my last birthday in September I was getting targeted ads for night creams, $5 face lifts and other products that turn back the clock.  They all said things like “56-year-old mom looks 35,” and included a photo of a woman who clearly was no older than 35.

But since Sept. 20, when I turned 57, they started padding my age.  I am now getting ads that include the words “60-year-old.”  This morning I even got some selling pendants and music boxes that I can buy for my granddaughter, which I do not have yet. 

I resent that they make us include our birth year in our FB profiles, as if it’s any of their business.  It’s bad enough that they remind us of our age every day in those annoying targeted ads that pop up whenever I visit my home page.  But I’m perplexed and more than a little annoyed that they have made me three years older.  Did they think that once I got up to 57 I wouldn’t care if people overestimated my age? 

Is FB callous or am I being too vain?

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3 thoughts on “When Did I Turn 60?

  1. Actually, I am pleased that finally you have caught up and exceeded my age! Unlike you Cathy, I am unperturbed by Facebook’s targeted ads as they are in either French or German. The French ads are always chic (mais bien sûr) and the German ads….well, I don’t understand German so who cares!

  2. You are not being vain at all Cathy – I signed off from FB a while ago -didn’t have the time and didn’t need some of the information people would post. I am now 63 and received all those pop up ads for “turning time back” – pretty annoying – and sometimes I would actually wonder “do these things really work” -maybe I will try some – but I then decided that those ads were just too good to be true! I will let time and nature take its course – gracefully I hope!

  3. There’s no rule that says you have to tell FB the truth. I have it so my birth year makes me 80. It drastically changes the ads you get, making it entertaining to see. Imagine if everyone made themselves 80 or older? They would have Board meetings and brain storming sessions about the “changing demographics” of Face Book! I say we all do it.

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