Find Out If Instagram Is Listening To Your Conversations To Develop Ad Content

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Does Instagram Listen to Your Conversations? The explanation behind the all too accurate advertisements and sponsored posts in your feed!

Does Instagram Listen To Your Conversations?

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No matter how many times you casually mention to your bae that you want a certain type of bling or to your BFF that you want a new wine tumbler for parties, it seems like the only place that these objects actually materialize is on your Instagram or Facebook feed. Do you imagine things or is it possible that Instagram is listening to your conversations? We already know that Instagram can track how many times you view someone’s profile, so how far- fetched is it to believe that Instagram can monitor the melodious sound of your voice? You know exactly who you are following and who follows you, yet unsolicited ads inexplicably appear in our feeds beneath photos of your coworker's attempt at a #sundayfunday brunch post. Karen, your finger is in the way. So, does Instagram listen to your conversations? If you’re already convinced that Siri is playing telephone with Instagram, then feel free to trade your X in for a Nokia, but if you’re more interested in getting to the bottom of Instagram’s eavesdropping ways then read on.

Why Would Instagram Listen to My Conversations?

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Let’s back up for a second here. Why would Instagram, which was bought by Facebook in 2014 for the small price of 1 billion dollars, need to be snooping on its users in the first place? The answer is targeted ads.

Targeted ads are not a new phenomenon, they've been around since 1990 (the Dark Ages) and they don’t run on CIA surveillance. Targeted ads appear when you view a product on a retail site, such as Amazon or Bloomingdales. Information from the website is stored in a browser cookie that communicates to ad networks what products you've viewed. So when you leave Bloomie’s online sale and open Facebook to find the exact same Louboutin staring you in the face, you can thank target ads and ad networks.

Are Targeted Ads on Instagram Listening To My Conversations?

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Not exactly. However, Instagram presents a unique opportunity for online marketers. Instagram separates itself from its parent company, Facebook, because Instagram gives its users the chance to curate to their likes, interests, specialties, and hobbies. So Instagram users are less likely to be bothered by ads that they see on their feed and more likely to be intrigued, especially if the ad touches on the topic of particular interest to a user. Instagram’s help page explicitly explains that it uses your Instagram activity and third-party browsing to generate the ads that appear in your feed.

For Instagram to create ads, "that are interesting and relevant to you and to do that, we use information about what you do on Instagram and Facebook (our parent company), and on third-party sites and apps, you use. For example, you might see ads based on the people you follow and things you like on Instagram, your information and interests on Facebook (if you have a Facebook account) and the websites and apps you visit.” So there you have it. It’s not every breath you take, every move you make but every like, follow, and page visit make their way around in the circle of life that is online marketing.

So Instagram Isn't Listening to My Conversations?

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As of right now, we can say no, Instagram is not listening in on your conversations. So go ahead and keep using Siri as your personal, free therapist. If you need a tad more convincing, Instagram’s parent company even went on record to say that they do not use the microphone to record information for ads. If you are still paranoid, you can turn the microphone off in the settings for both Instagram and Facebook, but you will lose the ability to take Instagram stories and videos. Which is really sad for everyone who wanted to watch the play by play of your Saturday night.

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