How is the right to privacy relevant to marketing?How is the right to privacy relevant to marketing?

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litteacher8's profile pic

litteacher8 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

There are two main instances where I can think of privacy being relevant to marketing. First of all, companies collect and sell information about us. This makes us feel invaded and uncomfortable. Yet businesses need more information in order to reach their customers. The other instance I am thinking of is when marketing reaches us. Many people dislike being called by marketers, and like e-mail not much more. Digital television is advanced enough that businesses are becoming able to target customers much more specifically. Finally, social networking allows a company to become part of your social life. These are interesting developments, and I am sure we will see more of them.
brettd's profile pic

brettd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

Internet marketers attach "cookies" to your computer when you visit their sites and then record what other sites you visit.  They use or sometimes sell this information so that you can be more effectively targeted with ads.  While you can adjust your internet settings to prevent this, some would say it is an invasion of privacy and that they should be able to surf the web anonymously, or at least be informed when their internet and shopping habits are being monitored or sold.

pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

The right to privacy is relevant to people working in marketing because it can limit the amount of data that marketers can collect about a person.  This issue has become especially important as marketers gain the ability to track the internet use habits of customers.

To a marketer, information about customers is very important.  The more a marketer knows about a customer's habits and likes and dislikes, the better he or she can figure out ways to sell things to that customer.  However, gathering information about a customer's habits can be intrusive and can violate that customer's right to privacy.

This has become especially important in the internet age.  Various companies have taken steps to monitor the browsing habits of people who buy from them.  By doing so, they can learn much more about those customers' interests.  At the same time, though, this can be seen as an invasion of privacy because the firm could be, in effect, spying on the customer as the customer uses the internet.

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