9:00 a.m.: Slept-in today as it’s a weekend, and that was very much needed! I saw that my iPhone screen was lighting up as I awoke, so I reached over to my bedside table to check what notifications I had coming in. I saw that I had several news notifications, some from Instagram, Twitter, and a notification from YouTube about a new video from an account that I follow and allow notifications from.
That made me think about notifications in general, and the private informational access I allow these businesses to have in order to provide me with the convenience of a tap on my phone screen. YouTube, for example, knows when to push notifications and alerts to my device and it likely knows, through my habits, what time to send me notifications, to ensure when I’m most likely going to click their link and enter their media sphere. Once I’m inside they know the video that I tapped on initially will end, and so a curated list of more videos is right there, ready for me to click on. This is effective as I have done this countless times.
After going through my notifications, I made some coffee and turned on my TV.
9:30 a.m.: On Sundays my DVR records Meet The Press for me on NBC. It’s a Sunday news/politics show that I enjoy watching as they have a wide-range of guests and I enjoy their roundtable discussion in the latter part of the show. I get my TV service through Direct TV, and I am sure they have a profile on me and my viewing habits. What I watch, record, what I fast forward through, etc.. this information could be gathered and used to sell to their advertisers who in turn will target me further in a myriad of ways, outside of the Direct TV service.
11:00 a.m.: I like to do a morning run on Sundays, and I played music today through Spotify while exercising. I have a wide and varied musical pallet so I’m aware Spotify is keeping track to WHO I listen to and I already have noticed that this data is used to suggest new artists to me who I haven’t heard of before. In truth I like this feature and don’t mind this data collection as the service has turned me onto musicians I otherwise wouldn’t have known about. I also wore my Apple Watch while on my run, this allowed collection of my time, distance, heart rate, etc.. this is stored in my phone but also in the cloud. It is also sent to an app I use called Cronometer, which I use to track my meals and movement and I will discuss this later on here in my day.
2:00 p.m.: I decided to watch a show on AMC+; AMC’s’ digital streaming service. I’m currently watching The Mayfair Witches series, which is fantastic. Last fall, the company that produced this series also produced the Interview with a Vampire series, also on AMC. I was thinking and I realized that I received an e-mail in December after finishing the vampire series, and that email was promoting the witches series. I know for a fact that the company was following my viewing habits and thought I’d likely be interested in this new series as well. And they were correct! Similar to Spotify’s data collection, the suggestions I find are helpful to me as a consumer.
5:00 p.m.: While cooking an early dinner I put on Discovery+ to watch “The Lost Kitchen” which is a cooking/reality show I enjoy that takes place in Freedom, ME. I love the premise and the episodes are very well produced. Discovery Channel has done a lot in terms of data collection, this led to their network offering content from a variety of platforms, like Magnolia Network, Food Network, The Cooking Channel and others. I notice that the landing page will always “push” content to me based on my viewing habits. After cooking my meal, I entered the information into my afore mentioned food app Cronometer. I give this app A LOT of information about me. It knows my physical stats, what I eat, where I go, when I exercise, how many macronutrients I’m taking in, etc.. It’s a lot of data, but I feel it provided me with a lot of useful “daily diary” information so I keep myself up to date on my goals, and it has helped me to lose weight and watch what I’m eating. I love it.
8:00 p.m.: I watched the new series “The Last of Us” on HBO Max. It’s a new post-apocalyptic sci-fi series that I’m really enjoying. Again like, the other streaming services I mentioned that I watch, I feel HBO is also monitoring my personal viewing data and storing it, to make suggestions to me in the future.
9:00 p.m.: Getting ready for bed and reflecting on this day’s media diary. While everything for me was run-of-the-mill and garden variety in terms of the apps, services, and devices that I used, I did think more about all of the private and personal data that I have willingly given to all of these companies in order to provide curated content, specific for me. I don’t really mind or give too much thought to it, to be honest. I don’t feel it’s invading my privacy and I feel I’m getting value from this quid-pro-quo type of situation. I give them a monetary fee and some of my data, and in return I get the content that I want from them. I’m not re-considering anything in terms of how I consume or interact with media and the data I provide in order to consume it. I enjoy the products and services I am receiving and that’s reason enough for me to continue with what I’m doing.