28 June 2014

Idle Words: “The Internet With A Human Face”

Well, people hate the online rules! Google’s answer is, wake up, grandpa, this is the new normal. But all they’re doing is trying to port a bug in the Internet over to the real world, and calling it progress. You can dress up a bug and call it a feature. You can also put dog crap in the freezer and call it ice cream. But people can taste the difference. […]

‘Big data’ has this intoxicating effect. We start collecting it out of fear, but then it seduces us into thinking that it will give us power. In the end, it's just a mirror, reflecting whatever assumptions we approach it with. But collecting it drives this dynamic of relentless surveillance.

Maciej Cegłowski

The online discussion around ‘the right to be forgotten’ – to have all records of personal actions removed from online access – has been long and the current solution imposed on search engines by the European Union not really satisfactory. This reprint of a recent conference in Germany makes the best argument for why we need this right, the ability to control the data corporations and states can store about people and for how long, and how the constant collection of data and the promise of future advertising revenue has corrupted the business models of internet giants and start-ups alike. It’s a dark view of the current state of internet surveillance, but sometimes you need a dark vision to step back and react.

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