I got a postcard the other day. It came to my own mailbox, with my name and address on it. It was from a company that wanted to sell me T-shirts with my last name on them, and with an astronomy theme.
“HALL OBSERVATORY,” they said.
The phrase I have used here, tongue in cheek, to describe my patio.
Now, for years I’ve been told that “personally identifiable information” isn’t being used for marketing purposes.
My address isn’t on this blog anywhere, nor have I given any hints about it. (The stars I have mentioned are visible from the entire continental United States.)
So how does a T-shirt printing company offer me a T-shirt with my name and one of my interests on it, to my home address?
Because personally-identifiable information is being bought and sold online.
Let’s see. I bought my first telescope on Amazon. Did Amazon sell my personal information to this outfit?
As to the T-shirt, thanks but no thanks. It’s cute, actually, but I won’t patronize this company on principle. Nor will I give it even a negative shout-out here.
If you get a postcard like that, rip it up. You already know your last name.
My last name is four letters long. So is the word I have in mind to say to Amazon right now. Followed by “you.”