i use a chrome extension called Privacy Badger which blocks spying ads and invisible trackers. it tells you in the upper right hand corner how many it has blocked on each website you visit.
here is Google Plus:
yes, that's eighteen.
i closed my facebook account earlier this year, but last time i was there it was WORSE.
here is ello:
the other day someone asked, "but how do you KNOW they're not selling our data? where's the PROOF?"
i suggested they catch up on their stats, particularly why we have type I and type II error, and what a null hypothesis is. (that didn't go over well. and yes, i know i'm being snarky.)
i've said many times that absolute proof of anything requires one to turn over every rock in the universe. even if you performed an on-site audit of the ello servers and found nothing fishy, maybe they'd simply stopped selling our data and would start again as soon as we left. maybe they have a shadow server out there somewhere feeding the advertisers our posts in secret, like a drug dealer. and even if you looked everywhere on the planet -- even deep underground -- and found nothing, the shadow server could be on a satellite, or on the moon, or even on pluto.
perhaps this isn't the proof a certain someone was looking for, but as those kooky "scientists" like to say... it's consistent with a great many other observations.
cc/ @cacheflowe @lucian @todd