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Compromised Data


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Notes on Contributors Introduction Ganaele Langlois, York University; Joanna Redden, University of Calgary and Greg Elmer, Ryerson University, Canada Part 1: Data, Power and Politics Big Data as System of Knowledge: Investigating Canadian Governance Joanna Redden, University of Calgary, Canada Data Mining Research and the Disintegration of Society: the "Project X" Haren Riots Ingrid M. Hoofd, National University of Singapore, Singapore Look at the Man Behind the Curtain: Computational Management in "Spontaneous" Citizen Political Campaigning David Karpf, George Washington University, USA Part 2: Data Limit(ed) Easy Data, Hard Data: The politics and pragmatics of Twitter research after the computational turn Jean Burgess and Axel Bruns, Queensland University of Technology, Australia Scraping the First Person Greg Elmer, Ryerson University, Canada Open Data and its Enemies? Digital Methods and Compromised Data Fenwick McKelvey, Concordia University, Canada Critical Reverse Engineering: The Case of Twitter and TalkOpen Robert Gehl, University of Utah, USA Part 3. Alt-Data Mapping Movements - Social Movement Research and Big Data: Critiques and Alternatives Sky Croeser and Tim Highfield, Curtin University, Australia Data Activism Alessandra Renzi, Northeastern University, USA, and Ganaele Langlois, York University, Canada A Contribution to the Political Economy of Personal Archives Yuk Hui, Leuphana University, Germany The Haunted Life of Data Lisa Blackman, Goldsmiths University, UK Index

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Explores the ethical and political issues surrounding big data, specifically obtained from social media.

About the Author

Ganaele Langlois is Assistant Professor at York University, Canada, and Associate Director of the Infoscape Centre for the Study of Social Media, Ryerson University, Canada. Her research focuses on new media theory, software studies and technoculture. Joanna Redden is Assistant Professor of Critical Media Studies at the University of Calgary, Canada. Her work investigates how digital technologies influence political, media, and protest practices specifically as related to poverty, inequality, and governance. Greg Elmer is Bell Globemedia Research Chair and Director of the Infoscape Centre for the Study of Social Media at Ryerson University, Canada. His research and teaching focus on new media and politics, theories and methods in social media studies, surveillance theory, and media globalization.


Big data promise a more efficient understanding of citizen needs, wants, and desires and cast a wide net of harnessing these tendencies in the hope of bringing about more direct forms of democracy. At the same time, however, they do so at the cost of compromising personal data, in effect sacrificing the personal for the political. Compromised Data features contributions from leading scholars who examine the immediacy and complexity of data, big or small, and is a must read for all interested in these issues. * Zizi Papacharissi, Professor and Head of Communication, University of Illinois at Chicago, USA, and editor of the Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media and Social Media and Society *
Social theorists and champions of civil rights have long been concerned with the politics and practices of dataveillance, forms of surveillance accomplished through computation instead of by visual inspection. Yet, Compromised Data may be the first book that is so very clear about the threats and dangers of surveillance after the computational turn; after when, that is, the concern is not so much who sees whom, but whose data is captured by whom and what calculations are performed on that data. You have been instrumented -- through all your Internet-enabled devices -- to divulge where you are and when, what you say and write, with whom you associate, and what you are interested in. This book asks in very specific terms how we are compromised by big data. * Warren Sack, Professor of Film & Digital Media, University of California, Santa Cruz, USA *
[CC] The digital age provides society with many advantages in the areas of communication and information on a personal, social, or political level. Here, more then ten international scholars who have examined the importance and complexity of social data and big data issues address the dangers that may occur in surveillance of online sites, including how and by whom this social data may be transformed and eventually controlled. Under the best scenario, data collection and analysis help society further the common good. However, the results of social data analysis can often be compromised. Avenues such as Facebook and Twitter allow users to share personal information, but often these sites are compromised by marketers who may use this information for profit. Clicking on a link frequently gives researchers worthwhile information, but even an innocuous click can be problematic. In addition, privacy is a major issue. Individuals innocently list information about their age, where they work and live, what their interests and concerns are, where they travel, etc., not realizing the potential adverse effects of their actions. Selected information from data collected online can lead to issues related to social profiling and guilt or innocence, as well as flag persons of interest. Overall, a thought-provoking book for all online users. Summing Up: Recommended. All readership levels. -- D. J. Gougeon, University of Scranton, USA * CHOICE *

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