So yes, these two ads appeared, and I surprised myself with the ability to capture this via screenshot. And I wanted to be like, how sexist! I wanted Lily Allen to make a (not-as-racist-this-time) music video in protest!
But ultimately, my only grievance here is with cyber privacy or lack thereof. I do indeed want a new non-stick pan and pair of black pumps. I suspect that I'd looked at exactly that pan and exactly those shoes. (Went instead with these - sorry Aldo.) And I have my reasons. I'm not ashamed. But when those ads appear, it's like Mark Zuckerberg has looked into your soul.
I've been on it for a bit, but only just now started using it. So if I know you in a professional capacity, or if you're a friend with whom I have some kind of professional overlap, I may have added you. If this is you, but I haven't, by all means add me.
I know it's very much the thing to scoff or cringe at "networking," but if you live in the woods and are trying to make it in various arenas very much not based in the woods, that charming air of offline mystery isn't an option. Given the extent to which I'm already using Facebook and Twitter to keep track of contacts-loosely-defined, a site that's just dedicated to that purpose - without distractions like a (truly amazing) video where cats steal dogs' beds - seems useful.
What had put me off LinkedIn wasn't "networking," but the fact that, like everyone else, I'd been getting invitations to be random people's contacts on the site for quite a few years, long before joining the site. I now see exactly how that happens, although it wasn't such a mystery: To find people you already know, you can do this thing where the site looks through all your email contacts. And what you're then supposed to do is only add people who in some way or another make sense. Which is to say, not to hundreds of former students. Not to people you may have either been shown an East Village hovel by (so many realtors!) or gone on a date with 100 years ago, so long ago that you don't remember which it was. But it seems a lot of people miss this (I for a moment feared I had - that I'd accidentally added everyone I meant specifically not to - but, no), or just, I don't know, cast a really wide net?
I'd started to associate the site with spam, basically, is what had happened. But according to NYU's career-advice experts, it's not spam, but standard. So, we'll see!