Whatever you’re doing right now, your browser knows about it. Of course it can see which website you’re visiting, since it has to process that information to display the content. But there’s much more happening in the background.
Clickclickclick is an amazing web experiment that exposes everything the browser is tracking at any given time. Upon entering the website, you’re greeted by a rotating cursor, waiting for input. But even when you haven’t done anything, the data is coming in. Text appears on the screen, while a disembodied voice tells you which browser you’re using, where you’re living and various other things.
From there, it only gets weirder. Pretty much every action you take is registered, and noted on the screen. The voice starts guessing your gender based on your clicking behavior, and compares it to users that came before you. If you don’t watch out, it can even get a little sassy – I got scolded for switching to a different tab for a few seconds.
After certain tasks have been performed, you start getting achievements that make it feel like a game. After a while, it gets harder to stop clicking – trying to get a perfect score is addictive. However, that’s harder than it looks – after doing everything I could come up with, I’m still stuck at 63 percent of all achievements.
The experiment was created by VPRO Medialab in collaboration with Studio Moniker, in an effort to create more awareness about how far-reaching user profiling can be. It definitely succeeds in visualizing the sheer amount of different events that are normally tracked in the background.
All in all, it’s a fun experience that you definitely have to try for yourself to find all surprises and hidden jokes.