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Overexposure- Should We Be Scared of the Data We Leave Online

Thank you for the draft.
- Please see tip #2 https://interculturalextraneity.com/important/about#week11
- This post seesaws between different views.
- Not all of the sources listed within it are listed in the sources section.
- Sources listed are not always summarized (this includes the plusone reference). Remember that especially in ‘hyperlink literacy’ it should be very clear what a link is about when it is linked to. It is necessary to paraphrase the main ideas so that people know what the link is that they might click on.
- There is not enough depth in the body paragraphs which explains the difficulty in writing a more specific title, intro, conclusion, and extract.
- The extract contains an idea that was never dealt with in this post so it only confuses things.
- The ‘thesis’ is never explained – and to demonstrate it effectively, it would have to have arguments that challenge ideas like this that this post includes: “They have the access to our location, microphones, search history”
- Note that the instructions for this assignment ask that a variety of course material be cited. This means at the very least two more.
- Therefore, in rewriting this post, the question is, what of it should remain.
- The most concrete part of this post is this: This movie perfectly corresponds to the article we had on our reading list (https://lareviewofbooks.org/article/thieves-of-experience-how-google-and-facebook-corrupted-capitalism/) which gives us in-depth information about the process of us becoming “the consumers market.” Additionally, Robert L. Mitchell investigated how much does the Internet know about us. In his article (https://www.computerworld.com/article/2530129/networking-what-the-web-knows-about-you.html?page=3) he tried to find out as much information as he could about himself. Within a few days starting with the name only, he found out more than he ever imagined he would. From his address, his wife’s name, social security number to his mortgages.
- You could expand what is meant by consumer market; maybe also the above point about the data mining of location, microphones, search history
- Review a few of the strategies explored in this course as to how to more carefully use the internet (e.g. weeks 3,7)
- You don’t have to have a conclusion for this. But you can express any questions, frustrations, uncertainties (note: uncertainties are different from saying it has pluses and minuses. Why? For example: because they show we may already be engaging but unhappy with the implications of our engagement.
- Please keep these notes here.


This post was based on the prompt: The risks of and ingenuity in social media

It goes without saying that the use of the Internet and technology is inevitable in this modern age. Although we are all aware of the consequences and the dangers we might encounter online, we have to look at both sides of the coin. During this course we dug below the surface and thought through what influence social media- the definition of this term was given in the Winx’s glossary from November 27th, at the Intercultural Extraneity site (https://interculturalextraneity.com/articles/master-glossary-social-networks-bias-media-literacies ) has on our everyday life. Though it might be too idealistic to think that social media could do us good only, I have to point out that we have to be extremely conscious and careful while using it, since every time we refresh the page, the Internet is collecting new data on us.
Even though we might be aware of the facts previously mentioned, we have to go in-depth to get a true understanding of the danger which lurks from the Internet depths. Robert L. Mitchell investigated how much does the Internet know about us. In his article (https://www.computerworld.com/article/2530129/networking-what-the-web-knows-about-you.html?page=3 ) he tried to find out as much information as he could about himself. Within a few days starting with the name only, he found out more than he ever imagined he would. From his address, his wife’s name, social security number to his mortgages. Truth be told, he, himself wasn’t able to find much, but when he tried paid searches he found out even the dates of his real estate purchase, taxes and the names of his past and current neighbors.
This being said, the next step is understanding how our personal data can be used against us. Another great resource when it comes to understanding how social media influences our lives is a 2020 movie “The Social Dilemma” which can be found online (https://www.imdb.com/title/tt11464826/ ). Ex-employees from Google, Facebook, Instagram talk about their time, job and why they decided to leave those companies. This movie perfectly describes what’s happening behind the screen. How big companies use information we agreed on giving to them, to shape our lives. They have the access to our location, microphones, search history and they use it to sell us something by ads (definition given by djaks on the Intercultural Extraneity site https://interculturalextraneity.com/articles/master-glossary-social-networks-bias-media-literaciesmight). Exactly this idea of social media being the tool of persuasion perfectly corresponds to the article, written by Nicholas Carr, we had on our reading list (https://lareviewofbooks.org/article/thieves-of-experience-how-google-and-facebook-corrupted-capitalism/ ) which gives us in-depth information about not only the way Google gathers our personal information, but about the process of us becoming “the consumers market.” This article perfectly sums up the connection between the personal information they use and why they use it. Google uses our personal data not only to provide itself with information but to predict our behavior, also. Not only do we provide the market with useful information, but we are objects the market controls. Isn’t that the core of capitalism? The author says: “Capitalism has always been a fraught system. Capable of both tempering and magnifying human flaws, particularly the lust for power… (The same can be said of technology.)” That said, Carr tries to draw a connection between capitalism and technology. I think, on the other hand, that technology derived from capitalistic techniques. The main goal is to shape society, and even though we think they’re not even close, the technology giants are making invisible, baby steps and steadily approaching. A great example of those invisible steps is described in the article. Carr describes how Google claimed rights over our personal data and privacy, and we agreed thinking that we’re gaining something much bigger when the truth is that we lost our basic human right-privacy. As the author says: “What we lose under this regime is something more fundamental than privacy. It’s the right to make our own decisions about privacy — to draw our own lines between those aspects of our lives we are comfortable sharing and those we are not.”
The seriousness of the problem can be understood if only we take a look at the term “surveillance capitalism” (https://www.diggitmagazine.com/wiki/surveillance-capitalism). This term has become widespread during the last couple of years and was mentioned in many of the articles we’ve read during the course. In one of them, Carrisa Veliz tackles this issue (https://lithub.com/what-does-privacy-really-mean-under-surveillance-capitalism/). Besides everything already mentioned, this article sheds light on some specific cases of personal information misusages. In 2015 hackers released names, addresses and credit card numbers of customers who used dating site for married people. This resulted in many divorces, extortions and suicides. However, this article also gives us hope and the author points out that a change is necessary and now is the right time for it.
Additionally, some of the most fierce arguments on the forum issued precisely this matter. Should we or should we not have social media? Are we or are we not slaves of technology? This question posted by or colleagues from the group plusone provoked a quite interesting discussion at the forum (http://interculturalextraneity.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=27 ). They questioned whether we are or we are not slaves of technology. Many other students stated in their replies that they do not consider themselves slaves of technology and that technology helped us, especially during the pandemic to connect and stay mentally healthy. Others, on the other hand, argue that the addiction existed even before the pandemic. This perfectly sums up different viewpoints when it comes to social medial flaws and ingenuity. The arguments are well-made and thought through so we can get an insight into the complexity of the subject.
To sum it up, the use of technology is inevitable but we have to understand that each benefit has its drawbacks. Only when we decide whether the risk is worth the gain, will we achieve the perfect balance. We have to stop and look at the puzzle, we may be only a puzzle piece, but without us the puzzle is not whole and complete. What would be changed if we decided not to fit in, anymore?

References:

1. Veliz, C. (September 24, 2020) What Does Privacy Really Mean Under Surveillance Capitalism? Taken from: https://lithub.com/what-does-privacy-really-mean-under-surveillance-capitalism/
2. Carr, N. (January 15, 2019) Thieves of Experience: How Google and Facebook Corrupted Capitalism taken from: https://lareviewofbooks.org/article/thieves-of-experience-how-google-and-facebook-corrupted-capitalism/
3. Diggit Magazine: https://www.diggitmagazine.com/wiki/surveillance-capitalism
4. The Social Dilemma IMDB taken from: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt11464826/
5. Intercultural Extraneity forum: http://interculturalextraneity.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=27
6. Intercultural Extraneity site: https://interculturalextraneity.com/articles/master-glossary-social-networks-bias-media-literaciesmight
7. Intercultural Extraneity site: https://interculturalextraneity.com/articles/master-glossary-social-networks-bias-media-literaciesmight
8. Mitchell, R. (January 27, 2009) What the Web knows about you taken from: https://www.computerworld.com/article/2530129/networking-what-the-web-knows-about-you.html?page=3

I, K.M., hereby confirm that this work is solely the result of my own independent scholarly work and that if any ideas, text passages, or diagrams from books, papers, the Web or other sources have been copied, paraphrased, or in any other way used, all references – including those found in electronic media – have been clearly acknowledged and fully cited.
-djaks k.m.

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