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Surveillance Capitalism

What started with the big tech companies has spread far and wide. Note that now every store has a “loyalty card”, or wants to collect your email address when you make an in-store purchase.

User data is used as a mid-point for revenue generation. It can be sold as a commodity in and of itself, and it can be used to promote sales of products.

Once we searched Google, but now Google searches us. Once we thought of digital services as free, but now surveillance capitalists think of us as free.

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/jan/20/shoshana-zuboff-age-of-surveillance-capitalism-google-facebook

‘Surveillance capitalism’ has gone rogue. We must curb its excesses. Washington Post, 24 January 2019:

Surveillance capitalism now claims private human experience as free raw material for translation into behavioral predictions that are bought and sold in a new kind of private marketplace. And it takes place almost completely without our knowledge.

— Via https://rnbn.blog/2019/02/02/1469/

Health Tracking

I use an Apple Watch, but I also trust Apple’s privacy policy more than many others. They are leveraging privacy as a competitive moat, so my interests are aligned with theirs.

There is a reason apps make it so fun to track your health:

But is it worth it? The amount of data these devices and apps collects is huge, and it’s incredibly valuable: a 2014 report claimed that health data is worth 10 times that of other personal data.
According to Jason Chung, a senior research scholar at New York University School of Professional Studies Sports and Society, this lack of legislative protection is frustrating consumers. “Governments everywhere should be doing more to reassure people they have a plan,” he said. “But quite frankly I don't see it.“

— Via http://www.loopinsight.com/2019/02/02/there-is-a-reason-apps-make-it-so-fun-to-track-your-health/

See Also

The Age of Surveillance Capitalism by Shoshana Zuboff

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/jan/20/shoshana-zuboff-age-of-surveillance-capitalism-google-facebook

“Surveillance capitalism unilaterally claims human experience as free raw material for translation into behavioural data. Although some of these data are applied to service improvement, the rest are declared as a proprietary behavioural surplus, fed into advanced manufacturing processes known as ‘machine intelligence’, and fabricated into prediction products that anticipate what you will do now, soon, and later. Finally, these prediction products are traded in a new kind of marketplace that I call behavioural futures markets. Surveillance capitalists have grown immensely wealthy from these trading operations, for many companies are willing to lay bets on our future behaviour.”
By now it’s no longer restricted to individual companies or even to the internet sector. It has spread across a wide range of products, services, and economic sectors, including insurance, retail, healthcare, finance, entertainment, education, transportation, and more, birthing whole new ecosystems of suppliers, producers, customers, market-makers, and market players. Nearly every product or service that begins with the word “smart” or “personalised”, every internet-enabled device, every “digital assistant”, is simply a supply-chain interface for the unobstructed flow of behavioural data on its way to predicting our futures in a surveillance economy.
Once we searched Google, but now Google searches us. Once we thought of digital services as free, but now surveillance capitalists think of us as free.
surveillance_capitalism.txt · Last modified: 2019/03/03 23:51 by admin