Targeted Web Ads Tied to Your Credit Card Buys

Pay for a fast food lunch with your credit card then see weight loss ads next time you're online. That kind of outcome is likely under moves Visa and Mastercard are studying.

What's the Latest Development?


Visa Inc. and MasterCard Inc. are investigating using what they know about people's credit-card purchases to target online ads for them. One holy grail would be, for example, to show a weight-loss ad to a person who just swiped their card at a fast-food chain—then track whether they bought the advertised products. So instead of your Web ads generally being based on your online activity, they'd also be linked to your bricks-and-mortar world.

What's the Big Idea?

The plan, if implemented, would not only be a technological feat—tying people's Internet lives with shopping activities—but erode Web privacy. "It's an effort by the two companies to profit by selling access to the insights they gather about people with every credit-card transaction," writes Emily Steel. After all, 'You are what you buy,' aren't you?

How Pete Holmes creates comedic flow: Try micro-visualization

Setting a simple intention and coming prepared can help you — and those around you — win big.

Videos
  • Setting an intention doesn't have to be complicated, and it can make a great difference when you're hoping for a specific outcome.
  • When comedian Pete Holmes is preparing to record an episode of his podcast, "You Made it Weird with Pete Holmes," he takes 15 seconds to check in with himself. This way, he's primed with his own material and can help guests feel safe and comfortable to share theirs, as well.
  • Taking time to visualize your goal for whatever you've set out to do can help you, your colleagues, and your projects succeed.
Keep reading Show less

Brazil's Amazon fires: How they started, and how you can help.

The Amazon Rainforest is often called "the planet's lungs."

NASA
Politics & Current Affairs
  • For weeks, fires have been burning in the Amazon rainforest in Brazil, likely started by farmers and ranchers.
  • Brazil's president, Jair Bolsonaro, has blamed NGOs for starting the flames, offering no evidence to support the claim.
  • There are small steps you can take to help curb deforestation in the Amazon rainforest, which produces about 20 percent of the world's oxygen.
Keep reading Show less

Bigotry and hate are more linked to mass shootings than mental illness, experts say

How do we combat the roots of these hateful forces?

Photo credit: Rux Centea on Unsplash
Politics & Current Affairs
  • American Psychological Association sees a dubious and weak link between mental illness and mass shootings.
  • Center for the study of Hate and Extremism has found preliminary evidence that political discourse is tied to hate crimes.
  • Access to guns and violent history is still the number one statistically significant figure that predicts gun violence.
Keep reading Show less