Please tell me your full name, social security number, and what kind of salad dressing you prefer

While there are a lot of things about myself I’m always l0oking to improve, I generally avoid New Years’ (where does the apostrophe go?) resolutions.

This year I’m making an exception.

This year, I vow not only to myself but to you, the reader out on the intarweb, that I shall actively resist all attempts to gain personal information about me for marketing purposes. Lord knows that with and all the associated stuff I post, my life’s not a real secret out in what Carl of ATHF refers to as ‘Cyberland’. (period placement intentional — I’m a programmer) However, I’m sick of this crap. I just wrote the NYT online to inform them that I won’t even bother to fill in fake info any more. I’m just not reading any more NYT articles, regardless of how many people and sites link to them. No ad revenue for them. Furthermore, except perhaps in the case of an emergency, I will refuse to purchase from a store if they require personal info for the sale. For things being shipped this is unavoidable. However, Circuit City, Radio Shack, grocery stores, and other companies that like to stick their noses into my business will get a cold shoulder. Granted, if I simply avoided these stores for their inquiries my life could get pretty tough.

When asked for this info, I’m always on the verge of asking, “Can I make this purchase without telling you that?” but never do. This is the year I start asking questions, and talking to managers when the answers aren’t favorable. If I really can’t buy it without telling them, fine. I’ll make do.

You should too. But that’s just, like, my opinion, man.