This text is by Katie Grace McGowan in her capacity and does not, necessarily, reflect the views of different infinite mile contributors, infinite mile co-founders, the author's employer and/or other author affiliations.
|Personal Views—for Sale
Katie Grace McGowan
The first pop-up advertisement that catches my eye today is from a company called datacoup, which touts itself as “the first personal data marketplace.” Essentially it’s a company to which individuals may sell their personal data from social media outlets rather than giving it away for free…
This is exciting in the way online prostitution was titillating, as a phenomenon, in the late ‘90s, when something that had been going on behind the scenes (since the beginning of civilization—the beginning of the Internet) was suddenly foregrounded. Because I am fascinated by the myriad ways in which contemporary culture morphs from invisibly exploitive to performative—in this case playing the role of the kindler, gentler, micro-capitalist venture—I will absolutely sell my data. Why not, I give it away for free?
Just as copyright issues are continually being renegotiated in the digital age [think everything from the copyleft movement and Creative Commons to the emerging field of Art & Law, (see Clancco)], so is our relationship to what was once called privacy in the era of data mining. The contemporary digital landscape is fraught with post-Postmodern issues to explore; when I discover something like datacoup all I want to do is sell, sell, sell!
While I haven’t even sold my data yet, datacoup knows me.
I will sell data related to my favorite candies
I will sell my queerness
I will not sell secrets
I will sell my preference for independent bookstores
I will sell my taste in music
I will not sell my body
I will choose openness.
My data goes to the highest bidder. Always.
No longer will I have to waste time drawing out charts to visualize my narcissism, now datacoup will do it for me.
I shall rest soundly knowing the 256 Bit AES Encryption is working, even when I am not.