Tuesday, September 25, 2007

What do you know about Spock?

I got an email at to private address today from Spock, saying that people had been searching for me, as well as for my husband and one of my sons, both of whom it mentioned by name. My email account service had flagged the message as spam, but I felt I wanted to find out what I was dealing with.

I clicked the link, and was taken to an account page, where I was advised that I was already logged in - although I have no recollection of setting up an account for myself and would certainly not be able to say what my password is!

There was a list of tags associated with my name, most of which were accurate - including (bizarrely) the fact that I have a dimple! Apparently, you have the option to click on the dropdown arrow next to the tag to vote on its relevance. It doesn't work in Firefox. It does in IE (but in IE my login details weren't uploaded automatically, and I don't know what they are...)

I remember an application in Facebook, where you could create a cartoon of someone. It didn't generate very interesting cartoons, so I deleted it, but the sort of questions it asked in the process would have resulted in exactly this list of tags.

So who/what is Spock, why are they aggregating this information and should I be worried/taking some action? I don't usually go in for conspiracy theories, but something about this isn't sitting quite right with me. Possibly the fact that, in order to explore further, I had to confirm information about myself that appears to have been gleaned from a third party source.

Have you ever answered your home phone, to be greeted by a stranger's voice wanting to know "What place is that, please?" or "Who is speaking, please?" My response is always a bit: who wants to know?

So now I'm asking: who wants to know? Can anyone enlighten me?


Anonymous said...

spock is a people search application that is getting a lot of buzz. some people think of it as a more friendlier google since they allow you to control how other people can search for you on the internet and also remove private information that other search engines show. others think of it as a not so good social network since you cant completely control what is out there about you on the internet.

Anonymous said...

I don't know of any social network that would allow me to control what was out there about me on the internet. Let's face it, if that were the case, Kathy Sierra would still be posting regularly.

But that still doesn't tell me where they're aggregating their information from...

Cammy Bean said...

It does sound sort of phishy...Social Networking Tools that become aggressive stalkers...I don't like it.