In the 2000s I used to use a service called last.fm (originally called Audioscrobbler) that would track the music I listened to and give me recommendations based on that. It was able to give me some really great personalized suggestions, but that came at the expense of me handing over significant amounts of personal data.
In prioritizing privacy, I feel like I've stepped away from a lot of the big recommendation engines because they're tied to data-hungry companies I am in the process of disengaging with (e.g. Goodreads is owned by Amazon). I can still find stuff I like, but it's often the result of manual searching that turns up popular recommendations that work for me, rather than less well-known or acutely relevant things. last.fm was good at giving me less "obvious" recommendations and would find music I was unlikely to find on my own. I want that, but for all of my media: books, movies, etc.
There's a second concern in that I also feel like I can't trust platforms like Netflix, who seem to prioritize their content over that of other studios. Their recommendations feel weighted in their favor, not mine.
What I want is an impartial recommendation engine that gives me high quality personalized suggestions without a huge privacy cost.1 Is this a pipe dream, or are there examples of this kind of thing out there?
1. I don't mind handing over some of my specific interest data in order to get good recommendations for myself and help a site's algorithms cater to others, as I get that's how these things work. I just don't like the idea of my interests being even more data for a company that already has thousands of intimate data points on me.