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Feb 17, 2017

2.17: good intentions; critical data literacy; biopolitics


updates and ideas from the D&S community and beyond

Last call: Propaganda and Media Manipulation workshop; applications due today!

Plus! Seeking engagement leads for Labor and Accountability; apply by Feb 24.

Around the Institute

When Good Intentions Backfire
“Think just as much about how you build an ideal system as how it might be corrupted, destroyed, manipulated, or gamed.” —danah boyd, arguing for a “hacker mindset” after our recent Media, Technology, Politics series

Getting Critical with data literacy
“The skills needed to copy and paste your spreadsheet into a great tool like Datawrapper or RAW seem far less urgent to me than being able to critically assess the limitations of your data and what it might make your viewer think; about who can access and understand that data, and what you want them to do once they have understood…” —Zara Rahman

Tech and the Fake Market tactic
“These new False Markets only resemble true markets just enough to pull the wool over the eyes of regulators and media, whose enthusiasm for high tech solutions is boundless, and whose understanding of markets on the Internet is still stuck in the early eBay era of 20 years ago.” —Anil Dash

Hacking Biopolitics
“And it occurred to me that the very things that make us human, the messiness of the human body, become a liability as we constantly face the possibility of shedding these traces in public, leaving artifacts which anyone could come along and mine for information. And so that is exactly what I did.” —Heather Dewey-Hagborg

Bonus: Our latest podcast episode, Privacy in the Era of Personal Genomics, is a conversation exploring the promises, challenges, and perils of genomics as it becomes part of everyday life.

Around the Around

Facebook Agrees to Audit of its Metrics Following Data Controversy
“Facebook has been under fire of late for a series of embarrassing data mishaps. And advertisers have generally been frustrated by their belief that Facebook and other big digital platforms do the equivalent of grading their own homework, while not allowing for genuine third-party inspection of their data.” —Mike Shields

platforms and institutions
“…let me risk a big generalization: I think what we have seen and will continue to see in our social order is the fragmentation of institutions and their effective replacement by platforms.” —Alan Jacobs