By Simon Bond

In the investment world of today the Millennials are just not buying what the Boomers are selling. An ever increasing number of market sectors are littered with the carcasses of the short-term gratificationists.

In this column we get to share some of our thoughts and insights whereas in our day job we are constantly asking ourselves the same investment question; where will growth come from? 

In advertising and media thanks to Google, Facebook, Instagram and others it’s a whole new world out there. Just look at the recent share price collapse of the former Nine Network as an example of the new world order.

Whilst we have been writing about the true “cost of free” and how the internet is the biggest deflationary force the global economy has ever seen. the Millennials continue to “give it up”, and they just don’t see it. The middle classes of western society continue to hollow out making our investment options fewer and farther between in a world of low growth, and low interest rates, and, consequently lower returns but much higher risk. 

Take Facebook as an example, whilst you happily sit there and give away your privacy in the name of “social media” what you are really doing is selling yourself and your future short, actually just think how much you are GIVING away all day every day. You just haven’t figured it out yet. And you know the information you happily give away is for sale? 

Selling your data is the public facing, completely non-secretive business model of Facebook.

Think of the standard stuff you provide them…


  • Name
  • City of birth
  • City of residence
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Current employment
  • Previous employment
  • Relationship
  • Anniversary
  • Previous relationships
  • Previous names (aliases)
  • Screen names
  • Address book
  • Family members
  • Birthday
  • Religious views
  • Address
  • Website
  • Email address(s)
  • Sexual preference
  • Gender
  • Languages spoken
  • Political views
  • Friends
  • Books you’ve read
  • Bands you like
  • Movies you’ve seen
  • TV Shows you watch
  • Video games you play
  • Food you eat
  • Your Favourite athletes
  • Restaurants and cafes you’ve eaten at
  • Activities you participate in
  • Websites you visit
  • Sports teams you support
  • Your favourite Sports
  • Inspirational people
  • Favourite clothing brands
  • Places you’ve visited
  • Events you’ve attended
  • Events you plan on attending
  • Events your friends are attending
  • Major life events (location, dates, who with etc.)
  • Photos
  • Pokes
  • Wall posts
  • Private (yeah right) messages
  • Groups you’ve joined
  • Networks you are a part of


Lots there huh.

As a Facebook user, you’ve got to be willing to provide data about some of the most specific and personal elements of who you are to a public company with investors, shareholders and government ties.

What’s even crazier is that a large portion of people on Facebook have public profiles, which means anyone can find this information with a simple Google search.

And that’s just the standard stuff. Let’s dig a little bit deeper. But wait, there’s more…


  • Videos you’ve watched
  • Comments you’ve liked
  • Websites you’ve visited
  • Articles and websites you’ve commented on
  • Surveys you’ve filled out
  • Companies you like
  • People you’ve been tagged with
  • People you frequently hang out with
  • Friends you’ve requested
  • Friends you denied
  • Friends you’ve un-friended
  • How often you are online
  • Apps you administer/created
  • Pages you administer/created
  • Your current mood
  • Device(s) you’ve accessed the Internet from
  • Exact Geo-location (longitude, altitude, latitude, time/date stamp)
  • TV, Film, Concert you are currently watching
  • Book or publication you are currently reading
  • Audio you are currently listening too
  • Drink you are currently drinking
  • Food you are currently eating
  • Activities you participate in
  • Advertising you interact with
  • Profiles you interact with most
  • Locations you access Facebook
  • Locations you access web properties connected to Facebook
  • Level of online engagement
  • When you changed jobs
  • How long you stayed in a job
  • Credit card details
  • IP Address
  • Apps you’ve downloaded
  • Games you’ve played
  • Pages/Businesses you’ve un-liked (when)


And then some.

I hope you all work out before it’s too late that you are worth more than you think. Invest in yourself first and foremost and stop giving it up for free.