We’re sure many of us have had very uncanny and slightly creepy experiences where we are talking to someone about something, only to open up our social media platforms like Instagram and discover an ad for that thing we were just talking about. It almost feels like we are being spied on and having our conversations listened in on, doesn’t it?
Recently, Instagram head Adam Mosseri did an interview with “CBS This Morning” with Gayle King who asked him about whether or not the app was listening in on our conversations, to which Mosseri replied by insisting that Instagram is not spying on its users. Instead, he suggests that it could be a subconscious thing where we might have already been researching the topic and as such, those ads can appear.
According to Mosseri, “There are two ways that can happen. One is dumb luck, which can happen. The second is you might be talking about something because it’s top of mind because you’ve been interacting with that type of content more recently. So maybe you’re really into food and restaurants. You saw a restaurant on Facebook or Instagram and you really like the thing. It’s top of mind, maybe it’s subconscious and then it bubbles up later. I think this kind of thing happens often in a way that’s really subtle.”
This is not the first time that the company or its parent company, Facebook, has denied that they are spying on its users through microphones, although we’re sure that given how it has the uncanny ability to display ads for things we were just about probably won’t go very far at reassuring users otherwise.
In the meantime, last year BuzzFeed released a video in which they tested out this theory on whether our phones are listening to us, which you can check out in the video above.