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‘How Companies Use Personal Data Against People’

“Our new working paper further explores and examines how the corporate aggregation and use of personal data can affect individuals, groups of people, and society at large, in particular in the context of two partially overlapping areas of concern: automated decisions and data-driven persuasion.”

Comment on our radar:

‘Russians took a page from corporate America by using Facebook tool to ID and influence voters’

“the Russian disinformation campaign exploited the core advertising and tracking technologies that Silicon Valley has honed over a decade to serve corporate America — and that are widely available, with few if any restrictions, to political actors in the United States and abroad. ”

Comment on our radar:

‘Stop Expecting Facebook and Google to Curb Misinformation — It’s Great for Business’

“The increasingly toxic internet is working as designed by the companies that control most of it — corporate monoliths that hold the primary channels of digital information distribution and obligations to shareholders, not civil society.”

Comment on our radar:

‘I asked Tinder for my data. It sent me 800 pages of my deepest, darkest secrets’

“Personal data is the fuel of the economy. Consumers’ data is being traded and transacted for the purpose of advertising.”

Also on our radar:

‘Basic how-to guide for preserving fundamental rights on the internet’

“Xnet has prepared this technical guide with tips and tools addressed to activists, journalists and citizens whose fundamental freedoms and rights on the Internet are being restricted by state powers or authoritarian governments.”

Also on our radar: boosted

Here we go then… my book, Accessibility For Everyone, is now out! 📗

Available in paperback and ebook from A Book Apart:

‘Big tech has become the world’s policeman’

“We should not allow private companies to take over our law and order. To say this seems self-evident. For-profit companies are interested in making money first and foremost. It is not their job to safeguard human rights, protect the innocent or uphold society’s values. And yet this is increasingly what big tech is being asked to do.”

Also on our radar:

Proposal to the city of Ghent by @aral: let’s start building the Internet of People with a City of People in Ghent.

(Ghent’s head of strategy said yes!)

Also on our radar:

‘Advertisers are upset with Safari’s new anti-tracking features’

“Apple believes that people have a right to privacy.”


Also on our radar:

‘Facebook Enabled Advertisers to Reach ‘Jew Haters’’

“Want to market Nazi memorabilia, or recruit marchers for a far-right rally? Facebook’s self-service ad-buying platform had the right audience for you.”

Also on our radar:

‘EU lost up to 5.4 billion euros in tax revenues from Google, Facebook: report’

“The document focuses on the social network Facebook (FB.O) and search engine Google (GOOGL.O), now part of Alphabet, because the two U.S. companies book most of their EU revenues in low tax-rate Ireland, a move that allows them to pay in the EU much lower taxes than those they face in the rest of the world.”

Also on our radar:

‘Make Mark Zuckerberg Testify’

“If the company is as powerful as it promises advertisers, it should be held accountable.”

Also on our radar:

‘Study That Claimed AI Could Determine a Person’s Sexuality Is Under Ethical Review’

“All this paper does is reinforce stereotypes and categories that the queer community is fighting so hard to break… But even if we accepted the paper’s premise that someone can appear visually queer then the paper still has major ethical issues around participant consent and the overall aim of the research”

Also on our radar:

One month until @aral speaks at Ecopolis in Brussels. For those of you from the rest of Europe, the event is being translated into English, French and Dutch.

‘Facebook Wins, Democracy Loses’

“The audacity of a hostile foreign power trying to influence American voters rightly troubles us. But it should trouble us more that Facebook makes such manipulation so easy, and renders political ads exempt from the basic accountability and transparency that healthy democracy demands.”

Also on our radar:

🇬🇧 ‘AI has no place in the NHS if patient privacy isn’t assured’

“While doctors and other medical staff are bound by confidentiality and ethics, we haven't yet figured out what it means when a digital third party — the apps and algorithms — are allowed in the room, too.”

Also on our radar:

‘Google Doesn’t Want What’s Best For Us’

“The rise of Google and the other giant businesses of Silicon Valley have been driven by a libertarian culture that paid only lip service to notions of diversity.”

Also on our radar:

‘Algorithms are ‘existential threat’ to shared reality, says Cathy O’Neil’

“I foresee more propaganda that directly challenges the concept of an informed citizenry that votes after having thoughtfully considered all options.”

Also on our radar: