… it may come back to haunt you.
This from the New York Times.
SAN FRANCISCO — On Valentine’s Day, Nick Bergus came across a link to an odd product on Amazon.com: a 55-gallon barrel of … personal lubricant.
He found it irresistibly funny and, as one does in this age of instant sharing, he posted the link on Facebook, adding a comment: “For Valentine’s Day. And every day. For the rest of your life.”
Within days, friends of Mr. Bergus started seeing his post among the ads on Facebook pages, with his name and smiling mug shot. Facebook — or rather, one of its algorithms — had seen his post as an endorsement and transformed it into an advertisement, paid for by Amazon.
In Facebook parlance, it was a sponsored story, a potentially lucrative tool that turns a Facebook user’s affinity for something into an ad delivered to his friends.
Amazon is one of many companies that pay Facebook to generate these automated ads when a user clicks to “like” their brands or references them in some other way. Facebook users agree to participate in the ads halfway through the site’s 4,000-word terms of service, which they consent to when they sign up.
You have been warned.