Thursday, February 04, 2016

Boob Tube?

Just how does You Tube come up with those 'Recently Uploaded Recommended For You' videos you see listed when you log in?  Obviously, I know that they are produced by an algorithm, but my question is, what data are they feeding into it to produce these results?  I've always assumed that the recommendations are somehow based upon the videos you've most recently and most frequently viewed, taking into account your whole viewing history, to come up with something vaguely relevant to your interests.  So, you can imagine my surprise when, earlier this evening, I found amongst the recommendations from recently uploaded videos, 'Hot and Rainy Afternoon Breastfeeding Outside', 'How to Express Breast Milk by Hand' and something called 'Daddyhunt: The Serial'.  Quite where all this emphasis upon babies, let alone breast feeding, originates from, I cannot fathom.  A quick check on my viewing history confirmed that the most recent things I'd been looking at were various clips from Jean Paul Belmondo films and several old horror movie trailers.  Certainly nothing to do with breast feeding or babies.

The only thing I could see which was in any way related was the trailer from the seventies Antony Balch movie Secrets of Sex.  Oh, and I suppose that rewatching the trailer from seventies sex comedy Outer Touch did involve looking at some bared breasts, although no breast feeding was involved.  As an experiment, I tried watching the opening and closing titles of Big Wednesday, to see if this might affect the recommended recent videos.  It did.  The breast milk expressing video, (which, although I didn't watch it, struck me as simply being an excuse to watch a woman having her breasts groped), vanished in favour of a Dr Who video featuring Jon Pertwee.  Again, the logic escapes me.  Now, I know that this all seems very trivial, after all, haven't we all been subject to the vagaries of online algorithms?  Like that time you looked at some Jeremy Clarkson books on Amazon, only to find that they were now recommending you buy Mein Kampf?  (Yeah, I know, I stole that from Stewart Lee, but it still amuses me).  But these video recommendations are all part of a wider and very worrying trend. Not only is You Tube shoving breastfeeding and fatherhood in my face, but my email spam folder is constantly full of stuff offering to hook me up with MILFs and offering me discounts on disposable nappies.  Damn it, even ebay keeps sending me emails recommending I look at various baby products.  I wouldn't mind, but the last things I bought on ebay were a new set of blades for my electric razor and replacement mains charger for this laptop.  What have they got to do with babies?

So, just why does the web keep bombarding me with all this baby-related stuff?  I'm a happily single and childless man who has no affinity with babies and no desire to have children of my own.  Is it fate trying to tell me something?  Because if it is, I'm failing completely to understand what it is.  Just stop with the baby stuff, OK?

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1 Comments:

Blogger Nasreen Iqbal said...

Have you complained about this before? If so, they're probably getting it from your blog!

11:03 pm  

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