Interview with Joseph Turow on Consumer Attitudes Towards Behavioral-based Marketing

By TAP Staff Blogger

Posted on January 15, 2010


Joseph Turow is Robert Lewis Shayon Professor of Communication at the University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg School for Communication.

This interview with Professor Turow focuses on consumer attitudes towards behavioral-based marketing; that is, advertising targeted to groups of people based on their purchase history, lifestyle, location, etc.

Professor Turow conducted four national surveys and one California survey on American attitudes towards online behavioral targeting from 1999 to 2009. Taken together, the studies present a picture of continuities and changes in Americans’ attitudes toward and understanding of the activities, norms and laws through which marketers relate to them digitally, online and off. Professor Turow most recently completed a survey in 2009 with Chris Hoofnagle of the Berkeley Center for Law and Technology: “Americans Reject Tailored Advertising – and Three Activities That Enable It.”

A 2005 New York Times Magazine article referred to Professor Turow as “probably the reigning academic expert on media fragmentation.” He has authored eight books, edited five books, and written more than 100 articles on mass media industries. Professor Turow’s continuing national surveys of the American public on issues relating to marketing, new media, and society have received a great deal of attention in the popular press as well as in the research community. 

The interview was conducted on December 3, 2009.