Why your data must be yours
In modern society our data seems almost ethereal. It is a mysterious cloud of one’s and zero’s that pickpockets our phones and processes it to pinch our personality, prying through our private conversations, with enough vigor to promote paranoia… okay. I’ll go easy on the alliteration. But this data dystopia (sorry) we’ve found ourselves in leaves us with zero of our data, whilst marketers are using our location, likes and LinkedIn Profiles (sorry again) for one purpose. Money.
So why don’t we see any benefit? Because nobody has ever asked. Mainly because it’s a tough question.
“Hey, um… Tom from MySpace… can I have my data back?”
Seems a bit silly, doesn’t it?
The Hub-of-All-Things is aiming to bring all of our data back into our hands. Allowing us to use and benefit from having our own data back in our hands – but aside from the shameless plug – each of us should be looking to do this, regardless of whether or not we have a HAT.
The Internet Revolution has been a bumpy road, by in large because it isn’t intuitive. If a marketer were to walk into your home, look through your wardrobe, flick through your mail and check what you’ve movies you’ve been watching lately (you know, the old fashioned way – by seeing which DVD cases you’ve left on top of your DVD Player) you’d be pretty peeved. Someone is in your home, your territory, animal instinct kicks in.
This is exactly what is happening online. Amazon is recommending I buy more jeans, Google are sending me ads because of what I’ve been emailing people about, and Netflix are recommending I watch Legally Blonde because I’ve been binge-watching the Clueless TV series.
By sitting in front of a screen we feel safe that our personality is ours, and marketers feel safe that we’re not going to question our AdChoices. Until now.
Your data should be yours. It belongs to you as much as the food in your fridge and the clothes on your back – by using products online we’re constantly adding to a picture of a digital avatar which represents us online. We should have a chance to meet that person, so we can see what they look like, and work with them to find useful solutions to our daily problems.
Your Data – Your Rules.