Why Sara Watson’s ‘Living With Data’ Series is a Must Read

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src.adapt.768.medium.1411483110376by Angela Guess

H.O. Maycotte of Forbes recently opined, “Amid all of the net neutrality debates in the U.S., the right to be forgotten debates in the E.U. and general public distrust of big data the world over in cities and countries in which internet usage is prevalent, it is the Living with Data series on Al Jazeera’s website, written by Sara M. Watson, a technology critic and fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard, that anyone with any interest in data should read (and by that, I mean everyone should read this weekly post). Thus far, Watson has uncovered the real issue behind internet privacy or lack thereof (spoiler: its money), given a ‘real person’ explanation as to why personal activity trackers (AKA wearables) actually help to fuel positive data science and explored the poetics and politics of predictive text (or why your phone won’t ever guess that you’re typing ‘abortion’).

Maycotte continues, “In other words, Watson is doing for Al Jazeera what is lacking at so many other media companies: bridging the gap between consumer understanding and technological advancements. Better yet, she’s making it interesting, too. The Living with Data series, as explained by the Al Jazeera editors, is set on exploring how our online data is tracked, collected and used. If you’ve been paying attention to the changing tech space, then you know that data is almost always tracked, collected and used in various ways, from what you text to who you email to how you sign in to Facebook. Everything you do has a digital footprint, and data brokers are hard bent on collecting and selling those prints at the highest premium.”

Read Watson’s Living with Data articles here.

photo credit: Al Jazeera America

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