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The Climate Change Hypocrisy of Jet-Setting Academics, and More

As Eric is off to Vienna, Austria to present on big data’s challenges as a policy solution, it’s a good time to ask – should universities establish a carbon budget for air travel?

The Climate Change Hypocrisy of Jet-Setting Academics

Cambridge Analytica may be the most pointedly nefarious example of personal data manipulation through Facebook, but Ian Bogost points to the thousands of third party Facebook apps like his own, which vacuumed all sorts of personal user data whether app designers wanted them to or not.

My Cow Game Extracted Your Facebook Data

Colin Koopman on how the “move fast and break things” ethos of data science came to threaten democracy:

An adequate ethics of data for today would include not only regulatory policy and statutory law governing matters like personal data privacy and implicit bias in algorithms. It would also establish cultural expectations, fortified by extensive education in high schools and colleges, requiring us to think about data technologies as we build them, not after they have already profiled, categorized and otherwise informationalized millions of people. Students who will later turn their talents to the great challenges of data science would also be trained to consider the ethical design and use of the technologies they will someday unleash.

Clearly, we are not there. High schoolers today may aspire to be the next Mark Zuckerberg, but how many dream of designing ethical data technologies? Who would their role models even be?

How Democracy Can Survive Big Data