So, here’s the thing. On my non-author Facebook, I changed my gender to male. I warned my husband before I did it, but I don’t think he would’ve noticed. He’s not the biggest FB user. Neither am I.
I don’t remember if I did it on my author one or not. I do recall thinking twice about it because I’m not F2M or trying to bamboozle anyone. I’m just sick of the ads targeted to women.
It doesn’t matter how many times I try to tell FB and their advertisers that 1) I am not a mother, and 2) I am not interested in returning to college. They were determined for weeks to spam me with an ad, “Mom, want to go back to college?”
You can tell those ads that you’re not interested and even ask nicely not to be shown them again. It doesn’t work. So finally, I made the choice to become a man.
Gender surgery in cyberland is pretty easy. It just took a few clicks. It didn’t seem to raise any particular alarms, just changed the ads I received and led to a couple of questions from old friends who always thought I was a little manish. Whatever.
I haven’t seen any notes about fathers going back to school now that the kids would theoretically be old enough to fend for themselves. I guess the assumption is that men would never sidetrack their personal ambitions for children, at least not in a way that needed to be mass marketed to. Sad, but I’m sure they have the demographic information to support that assumption.
Anyway, today I was checking my Yahoo mail and caught a banner ad for maxipads. Apparently now they stop 45% more leaks. Interesting number.
I used to work in advertising and was at one point very abreast of market research and such. A few years ago I read an article that said that 88% was one of those statistical numbers that people were more likely to believe. 80% wasn’t enough and 90% was unbelievable. So I had to wonder, had the threshold for believably gone down or was there actual tests involved in arriving at this number.
45%. That means that 55% of all menstrual leaks are still getting by! Messy!
I couldn’t help but picture the lab in which these studies would’ve been conducted in. Rows upon rows of crash test dummies with holes drilled into the bottom with IV drippers set to flow for slim, regular, and maxi sized flows.
They would all be wearing white cotton panties and a maxipad. All of them would show tell-tale red spots where the leaks occurred. Men (because hey, this is advertising and more people trust male scientists!) in white lab coats are all measuring the size of the leaks and noting them down, walking between old and new maxipads and doing mad calculations, coming up with averages, throwing out aberrational data and finally coming up with, yes! 45% fewer leaks!
“WE HAVE DONE IT!” the lead scientist screams, “WE COULD HAVE CURED CANCER, BUT INSTEAD WE’RE PROVING MAXIPAD VIABILITY FOR WEB ADVERTISEMENTS!”
Awesome. Because it’s not like those glorified Depends pads cost more than a new pair of panties or anything. Or make my twat sweat 88%* more because of all of the damned plastic rolled over my breathable cotton.
*using trusted percentage number. no crash test dummies were subjected to overheated genitals.
Even if it’s a little creepy to see banner ads created from the purses I was looking at on ebags.com two weeks ago showing up on new sites I’d never visited before, at least it’s not offensive. Even if I worry that the ever-growing profile of my shopping habits will enable Skynet to more efficiently profile me for the upcoming robot apocalypse by understanding which sweater from Coldwater Creek I’m likely to put on when it gets chilly in my underground bunker, I’m at least engaged in the process.
That’s all I really want. Skynet. No. Wait. To be engaged in the marketing. It’ll happen soon, I know. Until then, I’ll have to continue to deal with marketing based on my genitals. Oh happy day.