Social media genius uses eerily targeted ads to play a prank!

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Have you ever gone onto Facebook and found the ads on your news feed to be a little bizarre? Asked yourself where on earth Facebook is obtaining this information? Why are they showing you that ad specifically? Just imagine Facebook ads knowing things about you that you’ve only shared with a small group of people. Wouldn’t that be something interesting or rather potentially terrifying?

Brian Swichkow decided to play an elaborate prank on his room mate to exact revenge- the one goal on his mind was to make him feel unbelievably paranoid. This is how Swichkow went about it.

Living with his roommate, he had gotten to know the guy well enough to be able to create some pretty targeted Facebook ads. As it happens, his roommate was a professional sword swallower. A professional sword swallower who gagged every time he needed to swallow pills. Funny, right? Although this fact was not a secret, it was something that was only really known among their group of friends. How did Swichkow approach this?

He created a fake product in order to assist his friend through this uncomfortable experience, he also solely targeted it to sword swallowers.


He narrowed the targets down so much that these ads were only reaching his roommate. This was truly testing the boundaries of social media hyper-targeting, and although controversial such methods of marketing could bear a lot of value. Social media already allows digital sales teams to stalk their consumers, and lets face it, Facebook knows more about you than you do!

He even turned it up a notch by making an incredibly personal targeted ad, one that Facebook could not possibly have known about, further freaking out his roommate. Eventually his roommate became so paranoid he was  convinced that Facebook was reading his private conversations. After three weeks of messing around, Swichkow admitted his endeavors and was finally able to bask in his victory on his blog.

If you were really feeling up to it, you could also use social media to mess with your roommate. Swichkow believes the entire lump sum of  $1.70 he paid was totally worth it.

Can you dig it? Do you think this is a brilliant prank? Tell us in the comments!


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