Unwanted Eyeballs

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Unwanted Eyeballs

[cap­tion id=“attachment_108664” align=“aligncenter” width=“300”] An obvi­ous pair­ing of concepts.[/caption]

by baldilocks

I think we already knew this. How else to you think those ads are able to show you what you’ve just been shop­ping for?

While the pub­lic has been focused on the ongo­ing Face­book and Cam­bridge Ana­lyt­ica scan­dal, Google has largely avoided pub­lic scrutiny about its data col­lec­tion prac­tices despite hav­ing the abil­ity to col­lect far more per­sonal data about con­sumers across a vari­ety of touch­points. There have been efforts to doc­u­ment indi­vid­ual prac­tices by Google such as their efforts to cir­cum­vent con­trols on Safari. More recently, an inves­ti­ga­tion by the Asso­ci­ated Press revealed that Google con­tin­ues to track loca­tion data even after a con­sumer has turned off the set­ting. While these research efforts have been impor­tant to the pub­lic pol­icy dia­logue, no research exists which looks at the breadth and depth of data col­lected by Google.

In “Google Data Col­lec­tion,” Dou­glas C. Schmidt, Pro­fes­sor of Com­puter Sci­ence at Van­der­bilt Uni­ver­sity, cat­a­logs how much data Google is col­lect­ing about con­sumers and their most per­sonal habits across all of its prod­ucts and how that data is being tied together.

Listed are the key find­ings of the 55-​page report (linked above) that one can download.

And peo­ple won­der why I some­times leave my phone at home.

Even when I do that, how­ever, I know that there are cam­eras every­where here in Los Ange­les and that it has been so for at least a decade. And I bet that they aren’t all gov­ern­ment cameras.

We are sur­rounded by eye­balls, but I don’t fear it. That’s isn’t to say that some­thing bad couldn’t hap­pen due to the basic dis­ap­pear­ance of pri­vacy. It is to say that it doesn’t pay to be afraid of the intrusiveness.

Fear cre­ates clouded think­ing. It inter­feres with the clar­ity that is essen­tial to find­ing a solu­tion to this problem.

I am very far from ready to toss my devices in the trash, but I don’t want them in every aspect of my life either.

There is mid­dle ground and it can be found. I’m sure of it.

In the mean­time, how­ever, watch your dig­i­tal steps.

RELATED: Lock Your Doors

Juli­ette Akinyi Ochieng has been blog­ging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here. She pub­lished her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

Hit Da Tech Guy Blog’s Tip Jar for his new not-​GoDaddy host!

Or hit Juliette’s!

An obvious pairing of concepts.

by baldilocks

I think we already knew this. How else to you think those ads are able to show you what you’ve just been shopping for?

While the public has been focused on the ongoing Facebook and Cambridge Analytica scandal, Google has largely avoided public scrutiny about its data collection practices despite having the ability to collect far more personal data about consumers across a variety of touchpoints. There have been efforts to document individual practices by Google such as their efforts to circumvent controls on Safari.  More recently, an investigation by the Associated Press revealed that Google continues to track location data even after a consumer has turned off the setting.  While these research efforts have been important to the public policy dialogue, no research exists which looks at the breadth and depth of data collected by Google.

In “Google Data Collection,” Douglas C. Schmidt, Professor of Computer Science at Vanderbilt University, catalogs how much data Google is collecting about consumers and their most personal habits across all of its products and how that data is being tied together.

Listed are the key findings of the 55-page report (linked above) that one can download.

And people wonder why I sometimes leave my phone at home.

Even when I do that, however, I know that there are cameras everywhere here in Los Angeles and that it has been so for at least a decade. And I bet that they aren’t all government cameras.

We are surrounded by eyeballs, but I don’t fear it. That’s isn’t to say that something bad couldn’t happen due to the basic disappearance of privacy. It is to say that it doesn’t pay to be afraid of the intrusiveness.

Fear creates clouded thinking. It interferes with the clarity that is essential to finding a solution to this problem.

I am very far from ready to toss my devices in the trash, but I don’t want them in every aspect of my life either.

There is middle ground and it can be found. I’m sure of it.

In the meantime, however, watch your digital steps.

RELATED: Lock Your Doors

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

Hit Da Tech Guy Blog’s Tip Jar for his new not-GoDaddy host!

Or hit Juliette’s!