It’s not just lame start-ups profiting off of targeted Facebook ads, anymore. The New York Times recently profiled Morin Oluwole, the global head of luxury for Facebook and Instagram. I.e., the woman who’s earning both companies a mint by mining your data and selling it to high-end advertisers.
A rising star in the maligned organization, Oluwole has “built a business, and a lucrative one, on capturing user information and exploiting it to the profit of Facebook, Instagram and their luxury partners.”
According to the article, “Ms. Oluwole’s staff creates profiles — compiled from user information, like date of birth, ZIP code, education and work history, favorite music, pages followed — to pinpoint ad targets for brands,” the story said, which seems pretty standard, in a terrifying new normal kind of way.
But the thing is, “Facebook has all this data that you don’t realize they have,” the story said, allowing them to “know you better than your doctor, priest and rabbi.” And that makes Oluwole’s insights particularly valuable. For instance, if you “live in 90210… and you “like” Tesla, Fendi and Peninsula Hotels” the story said, you’d be “a bull’s-eye for Ms. Oluwole’s partners.”
(Though she insists that no data is explicitly “sold” to clients, the story makes it abundantly clear that “it is used. And luxury has benefited.”)
And it doesn’t appear that that will be changing anytime soon: even as other countries have started regulating data collection, the US seems, once again, allergic to the practice.
You can read more about it at The New York Times.