It was the same Swingline stapler, on the same website. But for Kim Wamble, the price was $15.79, while the price on Trude Frizzell's screen, just a few miles away, was $14.29. A key difference: where Staples seemed to think they were located, according to a Wall Street Journal investigation, which concludes that the idea of an unbiased, impersonal Internet is fast giving way to an online world that is increasingly tailored and targeted.

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