As someone who likes to flick to the end of the book before she has finished to - [a] work out if I have got it right and [b] in case, you know, something happens to me in the interim, spoilers have never really been something that I worry about too much.
Yes - perhaps they might take the edge of the plot somewhat, but actually the joy of the journey (book, TV or movie-wise) is so much greater to me that the final destination (and YES, appreciate I just indulged in some mega cheese there), that, for me, 'knowing' never really 'spoils'.
I found out the sex of both my children before they were born because - spoilers and all - knowing whether they were boys or girls (both girls btw) never really ruined it for me. I have forced friends into telling me they were planning a surprise party, pretended to act surprised, and still had a brilliant time!
So - we have established - I am OK with spoilers.
But I STILL UTTERLY LOVE THIS NEW APP! What power, what incredible power, to wield over people. The ability to ruin someones day, without intrinsically harming them in ANY WAY WHATSOEVER appeals to me greatly.
It also highlights just how totally individual people's programme watching has become.
'Event TV' has become a sad thing of the past. The collective "we must not miss this show:" getting together to watch it; the joy of catching up on it in the morning; the rich retelling of the story to those who were unlucky enough to miss out, are all - largely - gone.
TV watching, always an indulgence, has become a selfish endeavour in many ways. Binge watching, headphones on, the bleary eyed hiss of "shut up, I have four more episodes to go" are part of our every day lives.
TV - until recently - was a community thing, something to unite us, to bring us together. All too often today it is a solo thing, to be enjoyed alone and spoken about in hushed tones, in online forums or secret spaces.
And this in turn changes how we market, and how we are marketed too. The holy grail being the individualised experience - the targeting of specifics, to a specific person at a specific time.
Marketing is becoming telescoped down to the one, and whilst I admire this in many ways, and the technical brilliance that enables this to happen, it also strangely depresses me. I know we are not there yet, but what happens if everything becomes ultra-tailored like this?
What if everything that we experience (online at least) is fed to us by super-smart algorithms which 'know us'? What happens to the stuff we don't know - the stuff we don't know if we might like or not? Will it become increasingly difficult to find things connected to us in no way, and find out we love them? How will algorithms cope with unknown unknowns? Will our world and cultural horizon decrease; becoming less rich as we increasingly only focus on those things within the circle of our imagination, and forget about those outside?
Questions that keep me up at night (sometimes)...
In the meantime, maybe I need to target my GOT spoiler app at the creators of these algorithms, targeting them until they give in, and start mass marketing again. Mwa ha ha ha!
Meanwhile - I leave you with John Snow. No spoilers. No need to thank me!
If you’re lucky enough to be incredibly rich as well as mindblowingly evil, technology has provided you with the world’s most perfect tool of destruction. A new service called spoiled.io has just been launched. For a fee, it will text anonymous Game of Thrones spoilers to your enemies the moment it finishes airing in America. Although inspired by the story of a spurned woman who ruined Game of Thrones for her cheating ex-boyfriend by bombarding him with spoilers every Monday morning, Spoiled promises to go one further – by then tweeting the outraged responses of the victims.