The Equivalency Of An Expensive Ditko Original & Cheap Nameless Cheesecake

By | Saturday, March 09, 2013 Leave a Comment
Here's a piece of original Steve Ditko art up for auction on eBay right now...
Now, here's eBay's automatic cross-promotion banner towards the bottom of the same page...
First off, it's a piece of original art that's up for sale here. There is no "People who bought this item" -- at least not in the context eBay's using it here. Secondly, I find it hard to believe that someone who's plunked down a few thousand dollars for a Ditko original is also interested in cheesecake art that's less than twenty bucks. And it's only slightly less hard to believe that someone looking at a Ditko original would also be interested in an original from a Richie Rich comic.

I have similar problems with Amazon's "you might also be interested in" functionality. Neither Amazon nor eBay really seem to have the slightest clue why I might purchase any particular item, how that might relate to other items I've purchased previously, or how to use that to extrapolate other items I might actually be interested in. I have had Amazon recommend to me books that I had an interest in... but those were often ones that I had previously purchased... from Amazon!

I'm fully aware that an algorithm to predict the buying habits of any given customer is an insanely difficult thing to program, and I laud so many folks for even attempting it. But for as much credit as these folks are given in business circles for coming up with such great ideas, I have never found them to be remotely useful or effective. Am I alone in this?
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