Field Note #104. On "Datafication"

Source: Jathan Sadowski, "When Data Is Capital: Datafication, Accumulation, and Extraction" in Big Data & Society, Jan-Jun 2019: 1-12 (2019)

The Context.

The (Lacanian?) drive for data has deprioritized intentional use, let alone attempts at responsible risk analysis of the second order.  Rather, the organizing business imperative is "collect as much as possible with the assumption of figuring out data use later" (echoing the startup mantra to "shoot first, ask questions later or never").  This has created the normative groundwork for data extraction.

To what extent are AI/ML communities normalizing hyper datafication and what might the consequences be at behavioral and societal levels?

The Details.

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