For years now, data crunchers have tried to soothe the public psyche with the promise that individual privacy would be protected through the process of anonymizing the data. It all sounds well and good--at least to the naïve.
The sales profession should be hailed as noble since the lives and jobs of many rests upon their shoulders. Ultimately, they must choose one of two paths: marketing or consumer baiting. One is the high road, the other the low trail, and big data paves both.
According to big corporations, personalized ads are a 'must have' for consumers therefore everything must be done--everything--to meet that demand as fast as possible. But invading consumer privacy is really about improving the odds that merchants make a sale. It's to the benefit of sellers--those who sell goods and services to the masses and those who sell consumer data to third parties--and not to the benefit of consumers. So, let's just be clear about that, shall we?
The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and Networking and Information Technology R&D program offered a long list of big data collaboration projects designed to entice more interest in federal data from the private sector.
The companies netting the most from big data at the moment appear to be more focused on optimizing their operations and honing worker productivity. But beware. You can manage anything you can measure, that's true--but that doesn't mean everything you can measure needs managing.
Now that the vendor announcing, product launching and general crowing at the Strata conference is done, it's time to look at the news beneath the news. The undercurrents that lurk there show us any turmoil in the industry and the direction in which things are flowing.
I'd like to extend the invitation to you once again to share with me any questions you would like the pros at the conference to answer. I'm more than happy to march right up and ask them for you. But here's what I've learned at the conference so far...
The Strata Conference/Hadoop World in New York is next week. In an effort to collect the information you most want to hear about, consider this your invitation to send me questions you want answers to.
The Direct Marketing Association, responding to growing Washington attacks on data brokers--especially from FTC commissioner Julie Brill--released a study showing just how much data brokers are contributing to the economy at its annual conference in Chicago this week. The DMA is using the study as part of its aggressive pushback against regulators' talk about protecting individual privacy.
Twitter earned $47.5 million from its quiet side--its data business--according to an article in The Wall Street Journal. That's peanuts, relatively speaking, but it's the entire circus that comes with it that's causing investors to entertain the idea of throwing big dollars in the tent.