We can no longer freely live our lives. Majority of us, if not all of us, use some form of social-networking site, purely for leisurely purposes. We often don’t think twice about uploading images from the weekend and where it goes from there? But everything we do today, sending an email, downloading an App, “Liking” a Facebook page, is monitored, and never forgotten. It was like Bryan Adams’ famous lyrics “everything I do, I do it for you” were not written for a love song at all, but a song from the consumers to the advertisers, government agencies and large private companies in society today.  Because everything we do, we do it for them and to “help” these organisations market their consumers more specifically, or simply, just for them to sell and make a profit. So it is our information…but do we own it? Whos ‘property’ is it? This is a topic of debate and it seems to be split right down the middle of “for” and “against”, with some people arguing for “tighter restrictions” on the use of our data, whilst some people, for instance, Brooklyn Law Professor Jane Yakowitz, are advocates of free-for-all information, introducing the concept of “Data Commons”

Data Commons An area where everyone’s data is stored, anonymously, and is then readily available for anyone, working in the public interest, to use and gather information for research purposes and target groups and issues. In marketing and advertising, there is almost a data commons like cloud, that collects, not only consumers personal details like there name, age and address, but also their purchases and locations, to target consumers in a way that is most ideal for them. Example, a rewards card is not there to simply reward a consumer for shopping at Safeway or Priceline, but to see what they are purchasing so they can specifically advertise to that consumer the common interests surrounding their purchases. However, Data Commons in the broader sense, wants to have access and be able to use and distribute, everything! It would be like conducting a Census…but everyday and without our full knowledge.

Our data, ourselves

The week 12 readings “Our data, ourselves’ section discusses the way in which there is both good and bad in data privacy. It is understood and politically correct that in reality you might not want information about you to be known by others, however social media has taken this concept to a different level. When we think about how the casual Facebook user will utilise applications as a harmless past time – we need to consider how this is now a commercial enterprise to generate revenue from hits on advertising attached to the application, and to what extent its user’s personal information is going to be distributed. The issue that Jane Yakowitz is trying to bring forward is that a certain amount of data sharing is important. Here’s the problem; there is such a thing as too much data privacy. A certain amount of responsible data sharing is important to progress as a society, and if properly managed and cared for, can help us set better public standards, more effectively run our business/organisations, and generally give us a more accurate understanding of who we are.

Too much data privacy can be unsafe. For example, financial institutions combat fraud by sharing information about people who are going from one bank to another trying to commit illegal acts, so in this sense, yes, too much data privacy can be considered as detrimental to society. However, whether it be good or bad information spreads faster through a social network sites than through a real-life network. Information might be disclosed to a group of people unexpectedly, can be stored indefinitely and becomes searchable as soon as you’ve hit enter.  It can then turn out to be harmful when the information travels through different areas, and ends up with people whom it was not intended for. The readings depict the way Yakowitz is bothered by the fact that her research could be hindered just because a few people didn’t want “their” data being used in ways they hadn’t anticipated or agreed to. The experience had a spurring effect on Yakowitz, causing her to think more pointedly about how Americans understood their relationship to data, and how their attitudes might be at odds with the public interest. Her concept of a “data commons” came out of that thought process. (pg 7, Andre da Loba, The Boston Globe)

Q:What do you think? Are you an advocate of the open data movement?

The End of Privacy

This generation has grown up being completely consumed by technology and the platforms that come with it. Often posting on social networking sites intimate details of themselves, friends, family and even acquaintances sometimes and more often than not in an unpleasant way. But as the older generations also start adapting to the life of computers, smartphones and the Web 2.0, they also become victims of the Internet underbelly and it’s dark and shady ways. Although, being a lot more skeptical and proving harder to win over those whose deepest fears have come true.

The future of our data and reputation:

Once we hit send or publish our data is out there forever and waiting to be collected and used in a measurement or evaluation of our reputation and ourselves.

The future of data privacy:  

“You already have zero privacy. Get over it”. (Scott McNealy)

Scott McNealy’s comment can imply two things. One: Stop fighting for privacy, it’s gone and will never be gained because of the connected and technologically consumed world we live in. Two: Our not so private lives will be compromised even more. Any little bit of privacy we feel we have will be invaded and taken away from us. It has probably already been compromised without our knowledge and has been added to the data and is currently motile in the Big Social Data (BSD). Technology has advanced far past our expectations and is only going to keep advancing, so what is the future of our data and these privacy issues? Privacy can only exist when one person knows something and doesn’t tell another person. As soon as two people know you have lost all privacy, but in this day and age it is only coming more noticeable because the information is being shared and stored in the publics view and reach.

Generation Google:

Generation Google refers to those growing up in this day and age who have never really heard of Encyclopedia’s and who don’t actually understand that the personal data they’re publishing is no longer actually theirs and will remain there.

Q: Have you ever Googled yourself? 

Our Data, Ourselves. Our Data? – MARK COTE!! 

Data Motility

Data motility is the concept that data in the cloud is not just mobile, but can move on its own without administrators’ knowledge or consent.” (Cloud Computing)

In the reading by Mark Cote, he refers to the concept of Data Motility with Big Social Data, and the fact that once we publish any information online, it is gone and out of our control. This data is there for anyone to access and it is now “unprecedented in size and scale” (Cote, 2012) compared to when social-networking sites first began in 2005-2006.

Data Motility means that our data is mobile, it moves with us, however it then moves by itself once it is published. It moves on its own, we can access it but we have no idea where it is, it physically moves across platforms.

Big Social Data

Big Social Data is collected and made available by US. Every time we type, tap our phones, make a post, shop online, search Google etc we are contributing to the big social data, which because of the technological advancements in today’s society, the BSD is now of unimaginable size – we can’t even comprehend how much there is.

Therefore, it is no longer how we do big social data, but how big social data does us. 

The intricacy and size of our big social data today means that it can only be worked through and understood, through a complex set of algorithms. It was only a couple of years ago that companies were hiring University students to control and monitor their social media and data, now that is not the case.

“We already know that any attempt at analyzing this data on a human scale is not even conceivable.” – FORBES, 2012

Social or Scandal?

Some people have always been conscious and some not so conscious with what they post on the internet, although what they don’t realise is that even if they are posting what they think is okay and acceptable, is actually being collected and may even be used against them for future job prospects. This is a fantastic scenario on companies that have joined Facebook to retrieve big social data, to benefit themselves and who they employ.

Data Protection Day 2012 – YouTube

Q: How many of you have your social-networking pages set to private?

Louisa Cavedon 3759765, Whitney Plowman 3847613, Paris Regan 3854317