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Coming Soon, Web Ads Tailored To Your Zip+4 185

On the heels of Apple's intention to collect and sell detailed location data comes word that Juniper is putting together technology that will allow any ISP to present you to advertisers by your Zip+4. An anonymous reader sends this snip from Wired: "Your Internet service provider knows where you live, and soon, it will have a way to sell your zip code to advertisers so they can target ads by neighborhood. If your local pizza joint wants to find you, they will have a new way to do that. National advertisers will be able to market directly to neighborhoods with like characteristics across the whole country using demographic data they've been gathering for decades. ... Juniper Networks, which sells routers to ISPs, plans to start selling them add-on technology from digital marketer Feeva that affixes a tag inside the HTTP header, consisting of each user's 'zip+4' — a nine-digit zipcode that offers more accuracy than five-digit codes. Juniper hopes to sell the software to ISPs starting this summer, having announced a partnership with Feeva earlier this year."
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Coming Soon, Web Ads Tailored To Your Zip+4

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  • Why not? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by haqrboi ( 1263144 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:21AM (#32663524)
    They're going to show us ads no matter what, at least this gives a chance they might be a little more relevant.
  • by jamesh ( 87723 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:21AM (#32663534)

    Almost every web page I visit seems to know where I live down to the town or suburb. I think we slipped down this slope a long time ago.

    IPv6 might wipe that database clean effectively, but it won't take long to repopulate.

  • Seriously, guys. You already f'ed up DNS beyond recognition, now you want to break http, too? Someone at Juniper needs to kick the marketers out of the engineering department.

  • SSL (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Aladrin ( 926209 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:23AM (#32663554)

    Even more reason to use SSL for every site. Not like I needed another.

  • No (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DarkKnightRadick ( 268025 ) <> on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:23AM (#32663556) Homepage Journal

    I do not want this. Go away with your ever more intrusive advertising. GO AWAY!

  • This is worse (Score:5, Insightful)

    by AltairDusk ( 1757788 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:23AM (#32663562)
    I for one am not happy about my ISP who I pay to provide me with internet access and who I expect to protect my privacy doling out my information to advertisers. Advertisers figuring it out with the help of third parties is one thing, I can't hold the ISP responsible for that but this is simply unacceptable.
  • Re:Why not? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by betterunixthanunix ( 980855 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:29AM (#32663616)
    Why should we be giving up on privacy for the benefit of marketing companies? If I need to find local business, I look at a directory of local businesses, so what do I gain by having advertisements thrown in my face?
  • re: Just go away (Score:5, Insightful)

    by King_TJ ( 85913 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:44AM (#32663700) Journal

    You can yell all you want for the advertisers to "just go away", but the problem is, the collective "we" that use the Internet DEMANDED that monster, with our insistence on free services everywhere.

    I don't like the ad banners a bit, but I also realize I'm grown used to the idea of visiting my choice of tech or news sites without paying monthly subscription fees. I use several free email sites, and I've got a places that host my photo collections for free and keep backups of 2GB or so of my files for free. I've got some (again free) software on my iPad that lets me send and receive unlimited SMS messages over it, using a new local phone number they assigned me. Google is willing to assign me yet another free local phone number to handle voice mail services for me, au gratis. Need a quick translation of some text from one language to another, or maybe just a conversion between units of measure? Free sites out there give you those features too. Plenty of other message forums let you share info on your favorite hobby or cheat codes and walkthroughs for your favorite games. The list goes on and on. Do you REALLY think all these things should just be done out the kindess of people's hearts, despite the ongoing expense of hosting them?

  • Adblock. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by the_raptor ( 652941 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:49AM (#32663722)

    So location specific ads that I still won't see because I have Adblock?

    I wonder when the advertising industry will figure out the current amount of advertising has well exceeded the point of diminishing returns and is making consumers go out of there way to get rid of it.

  • by BiggerIsBetter ( 682164 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:49AM (#32663724)

    Really, I guess a technical way around this is to use Tor. And for everyone to have a Tor exit node. Screw the corporations and their fucking advertising!

    I agree in principle, but when advertisers piss the technical public off so much that we actually hate kiddie porn less, only then you'll see the uptake of Tor and FreeNet.

  • by Ice Tiger ( 10883 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:50AM (#32663740)

    Someone has to pay the bills for running a 'free' site and that is generally advertising.

    If that advertising is localised and potentially more relevant for me then I don't mind 'paying' this price. This is why even though I have the option I don't disable advertising on Slashdot.

  • by professorguy ( 1108737 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:55AM (#32663768)
    I've been on the internet since 1984. Back then, there was all kinds of discussion and many, many 'services' and info. And guess how it all got there? Why, what do you know? It was done out of the kindness of people's hearts.

    Then about 1988, the marketers showed up. It's been downhill ever since.

    So can humans do things for each other just to be nice? Yes, as long as those humans don't include marketing assholes.
  • Here we go (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ph0rk ( 118461 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @08:56AM (#32663782)
    As Anderton walks in the door, gets his new eyes scanned, and we hear a voice say:

    STORE VOICE: Hello, Mr. Yakamoto! Welcome back to the Gap.
    STORE VOICE: How'd those assorted tank tops work out for you?
    STORE VOICE: Come on in and see how good you look in one of our new Winter sweaters.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @09:08AM (#32663854)

    ISPs are drooling over the prospect of turning the internet into a premium service and charging both by the bit and by the site. They have already employed packet inspection and traffic shaping to control my usage as they see fit. Now they might start buying technology to insert information into my data to help marketers target me specifically (but it's not an invasion of privacy!).

    What next? A marketing service in which they auction my full name and address to the highest bidder then redirect all requests to his site?

    The internet thrives because it is open. It encourages the free exchange of ideas and culture. It brings people together from all across the world for various purposes and promotes community. If we make it resilient enough, it can be a great tool to promote freedom and democracy in regions where it is suppressed. It is currently transforming our society for the better and will continue to do so if allowed to do so.

    Stop trying to exploit it.
    Stop trying to control it.
    Stop trying to kill it.

  • Re:Why not? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by characterZer0 ( 138196 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @09:10AM (#32663866)

    We are going to block ads no matter what, so why do we care how relevant they are?

  • Re:Why not? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by L4t3r4lu5 ( 1216702 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @09:29AM (#32664102)
    As a letter:

    "Dear Business Owner,

    I noticed that you have started to advertise through my ISPs Zip+4 locality based advertising system. Unfortunately, I believe that this system is intrusive and an infringement not only on my right to privacy and anonymity, but also encroaches on the data allowance I pay for which is already prohibitively capped by my ISP.

    Thanks to the government allowing the ISP a monopoly of the "last mile" of the connection, I cannot switch my ISP to one not offering this intrusive advertising scheme. I can, however, refuse to offer my business to those who make use of it.


    A lost customer."
  • by betterunixthanunix ( 980855 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @09:43AM (#32664250)
    "Hell, go start your own society where you all have 100% privacy."

    Nobody expects us to have total privacy -- no such society has ever existed. However, there are certainly people who would prefer the other extreme: no privacy at all. We are no longer talking about necessary sacrifices of privacy, we are talking about excessive and deliberate efforts to erode any privacy at all.

    "Also, don't label all advertisers and marketers under one blanket label please.
    Some companies are actually decent and just want to help people find the things they want.
    You mentioned one of them already, the local directories of businesses in your area."

    Sorry about that, but it is becoming increasingly rare to see marketing companies that are satisfied with traditional approaches to helping people find what they are looking for. True, a local directory is a marketing effort of sorts, and when run by a business that business is certainly a marketing company.
  • Re:This is worse (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Shakrai ( 717556 ) * on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @09:51AM (#32664354) Journal

    Then I had to update my Cox billing information, and they got the new number.

    You didn't have to give them your phone number, you decided to give them your phone number. Whose fault is that? AFAIK there's no law requiring you to provide the cable company with an accurate phone number. They might get pissed off if you don't but who cares? They won't terminate your service over the issue.

    I can count on one hand how many outfits have my phone number and physical address. I even managed to get NYS to print my PO Box on my drivers license so I don't have to worry about every idiot that I buy beer from knowing where I live. This has caused me some grief at various times (TSA drones insist on seeing a physical address to let you board even though the passport is an acceptable form of ID and contains no address, figure that one out....) but I regard that as a fair trade in exchange for the privacy benefits.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @10:15AM (#32664628)

    If you have to have advertising, why not have advertising that is relevant?

    I don't have to have advertising. I can browse with images turned off, with Adobe's Flash security hole disabled, and so on.

    What I can't do - and what this does - is turn off my ISP's injection of personally-identifying information into my HTTP headers.

    If my ISP wanted me to install a ZIP+4-injecting proxy on my machine in exchange for, say, a $1.99/month discount on Internet service, that'd be fine. But doing it behind my back - after the packets have left my home and while they're being routed towards their destination - is beyond the pale.

  • by King_TJ ( 85913 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @10:35AM (#32664846) Journal

    To be fair, the guy is correct about how the net worked back around '84. But like you say, there were FAR fewer regular users back then, and most content was plain ASCII text, suitable for transfer via dial-up modem speeds.

    As you scale everything up, costs increase.

    Also, I'd argue that an awful lot of those "free" services you saw on the net back in the mid 80's were FAR from free. They were simply being funded by your tax dollars or by the tuition dollars of students, since much of it was built and hosted on university or research lab servers.

  • by eiMichael ( 1526385 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @11:04AM (#32665180)
    Now if the MAFIAA just ran a torrent index they could just send out settlement letters to everyone with that zip+4!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @11:14AM (#32665320)

    This should be easily handled with a browser plugin.

    Except not, if this is really handled at the ISP level, then anything done by the client is pointless, you are being MITM'd, and the party you are connecting to WANTS you to be, your screwed!

    This is like if the mailman inspected every letter from your mailbox and 'helpfully' added return addresses to all your letters.

  • Re:Why not? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Lehk228 ( 705449 ) on Wednesday June 23, 2010 @05:45PM (#32671280) Journal
    be aware if you DO set a change of address with the post office, anyone may find it out by mailing your old address with "Change Service Requested" or "Address service Requested" endorsement added to the envelope

    Per []

    Address Service Requested.

    * Months 1 - 12: the mailpiece is forwarded; no charge; a separate notice of the new address is provided; an address correction fee is charged.
    * Months 13 - 18: the mailpiece is returned with the new address attached; no charge.
    * After month 18 or if undeliverable: the mailpiece is returned with reason for nondelivery attached; no charge.

    Change Service Requested. Separate notice of new address or reason for nondelivery provided; in either case, address-correction fee is charged; mailpiece is not forwarded or returned but disposed of by the Postal Service. This endorsement option is available for First-Class Mail only when used in conjunction with electronic ACS(TM) Service.

    it is important that anyone who is trying to avoid being found by private entities either not file a COA or do so to a PO box or other alternate mailing address. in particular if you are hiding from criminals / stalker/ abusive spouse

In seeking the unattainable, simplicity only gets in the way. -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982