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The New Inquiry | 05.30.14

The Anxieties of Big Data

Kate Crawford

In this essay Data & Society affiliate Kate Crawford asks, “What does the lived reality of Big Data feel like?” She offers “surveillant anxiety — the fear that all the data we are shedding every day is too revealing of our intimate selves but may also misrepresent us.” And she pairs the anxiety of the surveilled with the anxiety of the surveillers: “that no matter how much data they have, it is always incomplete, and the sheer volume can overwhelm the critical signals in a fog of possible correlations.”

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