What's wrong with -?

Shopping online is getting harder and harder. Amazon, Etsy and even Google Shopping no longer support “-” to exclude words from a search. I thought today’s marketing is supposed to be about showing people things they’re interested in, not showing us things we’re not interested in and are actively trying to avoid. I don’t understand the strategy here. Is the “-” more more time-consuming from a server/computation perspective? Can’t be; users spend more time scrolling through junk and have to make more server queries when the results are junk. I can still use Google to search Amazon (until Google someday puts a stop to that). But I envision a day when I start going to physical retail stores again simply for the benefit of being able to walk to a particular aisle that has a particular kind of product and that doesn’t have random other irrelevant products. Thank you.

What do you do when you see an aisle with “Cookies - Crackers - Baking supplies” but the only thing you want is sugar?

The problem is when there’s cat food, duct tape and bleach in with the baking supplies.

That sounds bloody convenient if you’re a sociopath.

But physical stores do this already, positioning staple items so that you first must walk past impulse buys to reach them. Online retailers might think the same way–if they only show you specifically what you want to buy, you’ll buy only that specific thing. If you see other stuff that you weren’t thinking of at first, you just might pick up some of that, too.

I’m happy as long as that aisle doesn’t sell sugar t-shirts, sugar keyrings, the song “Sugar Sugar” by The Archies or any book with “Sugar” in its title.

If you’re going to make me see random things, might as well make them truly random instead of matching the very thing I am avoiding. I’m giving them a huge piece of valuable data, telling them what I don’t like, and instead of thanking me for helping them personalize the results to me they ironically punish me. So you don’t like t-shirts, eh? Have all the t-shirts you want!!!

Still not as bad as the ads for the thing I just bought!