Can Marketers Ever Publicly Embrace Privacy?

I always feel like I’m straddling both sides of the marketing equation. Because I’m a consumer, too, and often things hit me like a consumer, not an advertising copywriter.

The increasing ability of marketers to collect reams of information is particularly concerning to me. Not because they can, but because they simply don’t know what to do with all the information and can’t be trusted to use it wisely.

Most marketers, however, don’t employ the human intelligence portion that makes data collection a truly remarkable tool. The reality is marketers will always default to whatever’s easiest. Right now, collecting vast amounts of information that never reaches human eyeballs is the cheaper, efficient way to go. It’s always better to abdicate responsibility when information is used maliciously.

It would take an actual movement, not some BS marketing movement, for consumers to rise up and say, “We don’t want this intrusiveness.” I’m not holding my breath on that. As a society, we trade our personal information for convenience every day. Consider it the Terms and Conditions of living a modern life.

It’s the subject of my latest column on Talent Zoo.

About Dan Goldgeier

Blogging on AdPulp since 2005, Dan Goldgeier is a Seattle-based freelance copywriter with experience at advertising agencies across the U.S. He is a graduate of the Creative Circus ad school, and currently teaches at Seattle's School of Visual Concepts. In addition, he is a regular columnist for Dan published the best of his columns in a book entitled View From The Cheap Seats: A Broader Look at Advertising, Marketing, Branding, Global Politics, Office Politics, Sexual Politics, and Getting Drunk During a Job Interview. Look for it on Amazon in paperback and e-book editions.


  1. As marketers we should follow ethics guidelines. The demand for the negatives in marketing is too high, and some marketer will have the urge to profiteer from bad ethics. If no one had bad ethics than bad ethics would be a proposition value for a company trying to get ahead. it seems like a beast that may not be able to be tamed for now. In the future we will have companies that will have a proposition value of being ethical, when so many have turned to “the dark side” because it seems to be really effective to be unethical.

    I think I have had to much coffee… good day sir!