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    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    Target has done so much research on people's buying habits, that if you use their card and shop there regularly, they can tell from your purchase habits, and changes in them, not only if you are pregnant, but the week of your due date. They track such information in order to send you coupons.

    I never accept store cards because I don't want their damned advertising. But this sort of personal tracking is another reason. They can figure out all sorts of stuff about you from your buying patterns, and they can sell that information to whoever they like. Some of that information will be used to send you advertising. Some might be used for more nefarious ends.

    The above (about pregnancy) gleaned from a recent Fresh Air podcast.
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    CandyCanePrincess New Member

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    I try to not be paranoid about the cards, but I once remember hearing about a slip and fall lawsuit at the super market. The market responded with the customers shopping habits and showed that s/he bought the 6 pack of wine (where they give you the extra discounte) and was probably drunk when he fell!!! Which was possibly not the exact case due to the timing of the fall and purchase, but they did try to use his shopping habits at their own store against him.
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    amm0bob Permanently Junior...

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    I have cards from a number of of retailers... I do receive stuff in the mail from them... I* sure hope they don't say I'm pregnant... cause... it would be difficult to explain to the frau...
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    mmcdonal Active Member

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    Well, it's not like they don't pay you for the information... or actually, they penalize you with higher prices if you don't use their cards. Anyway, it is quite benign. Targeted advertising, as it were. It saves the advertisers shot-gunning every shopper. I guess that's why I don't get coupons for pre-natal products from Target. That lowers costs, and introduces some competition (if they know I always buy a brand of coffee, the competitors will offer me a coupon on their brand.)
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    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    Am I getting old to be concerned by all of this?
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    Eileen82 New Member

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    [IMG][IMG]Which was possibly not the exact case due to the timing of the fall and purchase
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    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    It lowers cost only to them, not to me.

    I don't know about Target specifically, but this sort of targeted advertising also enables dynamic pricing. They pigeonhole individuals not only by perceived interests, but also by price sensitivity, and show each a price just barely below their probable threshold -- but no lower. The best prices are shown only to those individuals known to be the most cost sensitive or the best comparison shoppers. Shoppers known or thought to be less price sensitive are shown only higher prices.

    Like the targeted display results of search engines, I'm more concerned about how they maximize revenue by careful selecting what not to show me.
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    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    I don't get the targeted advertising because I don't have the cards (because I hate advertising). But I do get coupons at the check-out. Sometimes I'll buy something and they'll give me a coupon for a different brand. But I shop for quality, not price. I'll pay extra for better quality, and I seldom buy the cheapest product.

    All this is very nefarious, as it benefits them, not us. But, OTOH, it's just business as usual under capitalism. The rich take money from the poor, and the wealth gap grows and grows. Fortunately for me, I'm quite comfortable financially. But the people who are poor enough to need lower prices are just being sucked dry by a system that charges them more and more for less and less, all the while placating them by giving them a few pennies off the inflated "official" price.
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    Skoorbmax Senior Member

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    Eoin Active Member

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    If Target knows when my wife is pregnant, next time I will save money on the test and just ask them. Seems their pharmacy will lose out.
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    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    They won't tell you. They keep all that information very secret so that they can profit by it and nobody else. But when she suddenly starts getting cents-off coupons for diapers in the mail, you might take that as a sign.
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    Scummer Eh?

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    Does Target also initiate a recall on the condoms which I purchased roughly 2-3 month before Target deducted that my wife has become pregnant?
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    a_gray_prius Rare Non-Old-Blowhard Priuschat Member

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    Facebook and Google know even more than Target does.
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    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    CNN blogs - Data: It's how stores know you're pregnant

    "
    Target may have been too successful in this goal; as Duhigg writes, one teenage customer in Minneapolis was "outed" as being pregnant by a coupon mailer sent to her house. Her father was justifiably upset to see Target offering his underage daughter discounts on diapers and cribs, though he was perhaps more upset when he discovered Target knew more about his daughter's personal life than he did."

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