Ever heard of psychometrics? When you take those online personality quizzes on Facebook, you are giving data management companies enormous amounts of information out about yourself for free. They correlate it with all the other things they have learned about you on the Internet and use that data to tailor their messages to you about what to buy and who to vote for. These metrics were used in two main ways in the recent election: to reinforce right wing ideologies and voting preferences and to suppress voting by potential Clinton supporters.
An example of the former: Gun rights proponents and possible gun purchasers, on the basis of online test results from those fun-looking quizzes on Facebook, fall into two main groups: introverts and extroverts. Anxious introverts are targeted with ads showing break-ins, home invasions, etc. Extroverts are shown taking boys out on hunting trips.
And of the latter: African American voters see sidebar clips of Hillary Clinton talking about "superpredators" and presumably decide not to vote for her.
The sellers of this kind of targeted outreach say that ads with mass appeal are ineffective. They lay claim to having won the election for Trump in an economical way, with the use of easily available data.
To me the irony of all this is that the people they have hyped and sold their methodology to are the most gullible of all: Trump and his followers. I am highly skeptical as to the effectiveness of psychometrics, especially after seeing how a simple call for women's rights was able to bring millions of people into the streets last Saturday. Just my women's intuition? Wonder how I'd score on that!
The whole Trump thing is imploding. It's based on the idea that Americans are stupid and gullible and can be manipulated by hucksters. This is the article about the company that purports to have swung the election for Trump with the use of psychometrics. It's where I got my info about all this.
Not that Trump isn't doing amazing amounts of damage. For that reason I remain alarmed.