#TheAgeOfSurveillanceCapitalism quotes Michal Kosinski (a pioneer of the original personality analysis work that was harness by #CambridgeAnalytica, IBM Watson, and others) characterizing his own work as "pretty creepy", and stressing that "many of the things that... one *can* do should certainly *not be done*.
Kosinski and his colleague, David Stillwell, warned that "social media users are dangerously unaware of the vulnerabilities that follow their innocent but voluminous personal disclosures".
Just FaceBook 'likes' can supposedly reveal "sexual orientation, ethnicity, religious and political views, personality traits, intelligence, happiness, use of addictive substances, parental separation, age, and gender"
#IBMWatson can supposedly use texts to glean the authors' 'big five' personality characteristics, but also their 'needs': "Excitement, Harmony, Curiosity, Ideal, Closeness, Self-expression, Liberty, Love, Practicality, Stability, Challenge, and Structure", and also 'values': "Self-transcendance/Helping others, Conservation/Tradition, Hedonism/Taking pleasure in life, Self-enhancement/Achieving success, and Open to change/Excitement"
Talking about Facebook [and presumably other surveillance capitalists] hoarding their analyses of personality-revealing data, Kosinski says "it's not because they're evil, but because the general public is bloody stupid." Not because we share our data, but because we don't compel surveillance capitalists to share *their* data with *us*: "We should basically grow up finally and stop it".
Talk about victim blaming!
e.g. #TheAgeOfSurveillanceCapitalism also quotes #CambridgeAnalytica's CEO bragging in a car dealer's magazine about how "it only takes small improvements in conversion rates for a dealership to see a dramatic shift in revenue."
But I've recently been subject an aggressive and presumably targeted campaign of ads for the Ford Raza Fuerte. Somebody's personality-inferring algorithms are scewiff; I'm *so* not going to buy a car, and even if I did, it would never be a 4x4
A nit-picky marginal note:
#TheAgeOfSurveillanceCapitalism uses the word 'prediction' in the context of personality analysis, a term presumably lifted directly from the literature. 'Predict' is a technical scientific term in this context which basically means 'guess facts we didn't otherwise know'.
It *doesn't* have the colloquial meaning of 'forecast the future'.
It annoys me that Zuboff uses 'predict' in both senses in the book, without teasing them apart. I'm not certain it's unintentional
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