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Here is a little story from earlier this week that should warm the cockles of your heart. (Disclaimer: I don't exactly know what cockles are, or where they reside in the body. I just know that they are prone to getting cold and require frequent warming. So wherever you keep your cockles, prepare for them to be warmed.) Advertisers are upset with Apple and Amazon because those companies will not sell out their customers. Here's the scoop:

Why Can't Amazon And Apple Catch a Break on Madison Ave?

The lack of data both companies deliver is frustrating for marketers because these notoriously opaque giants sit atop incredible troves of information about what consumers actually buy and like, as well as who they are and where they live. One person familiar with the situation exec said Apple's refusal to share data makes it the best-looking girl at the party, forced to wear a bag over her head.

Those treasure troves of information the two companies are sitting on are about you. That is highly valuable and personal information about you and your tendencies. You provided access to this information to these companies in exchange for products and services that come directly from these companies. You did not provide it for the hoards of other companies to exploit you. When you do business with a company, you want that business to stay within the confides of that company. Apple and Amazon respect that unwritten contract. Your information is safe with them, and advertisers don't like it.

What should concern you is doing business with the companies with whom advertisers are happy. Advertisers are only happy with companies that cough up your personal data. Advertisers are very happy with Google and Yahoo. Think of Google as that boyfriend that took some nude pictures of you one drunken evening. The next day, you discover that those pictures have been circulated among all your friends, and the whole world. Google has sold those intimate photos to all the adult sites, and plastered them all over the internet. That's Google. Your email, private messages, calendars, and even voice mail is all fair game for exploitation. And you thought that stuff was just between you and Google. Fool!

David Johnson

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