Inferences & Connections

The Social, Cultural & Ethical Dimensions of “Big Data,” March 2014

6 Pages Posted: 16 Dec 2014 Last revised: 28 Jul 2015

See all articles by Alex Rosenblat

Alex Rosenblat

Data & Society Research Institute

Tamara Kneese

University of San Francisco; Data & Society Research Institute

Danah Boyd

Data & Society Research Institute; Microsoft Research

Date Written: March 17, 2014

Abstract

Data-oriented systems are inferring relationships between people based on genetic material, behavioral patterns (e.g., shared geography imputed by phone carriers), and performed associations (e.g., "friends" online or shared photographs). What responsibilities do entities who collect data that imputes connections have to those who are implicated by association? For example, as DNA and other biological materials are collected outside of medicine (e.g., at point of arrest, by informatics services like 23andme, for scientific inquiry), what rights do relatives (living, dead, and not-yet-born) have? In what contexts is it acceptable to act based on inferred associations and in which contexts is it not?

Keywords: inferences, connections, behavioral patterns, big data, relational networks

Suggested Citation

Rosenblat, Alex and Kneese, Tamara and Boyd, Danah, Inferences & Connections (March 17, 2014). The Social, Cultural & Ethical Dimensions of “Big Data,” March 2014. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2538564 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2538564

Alex Rosenblat

Data & Society Research Institute ( email )

36 West 20th Street
New York,, NY
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.datasociety.net

Tamara Kneese

University of San Francisco ( email )

2130 Fulton Street
San Francisco, CA 94117
United States

Data & Society Research Institute ( email )

36 West 20th Street
11th Floor
New York,, NY 10011
United States

Danah Boyd (Contact Author)

Data & Society Research Institute ( email )

36 West 20th Street
11th Floor
New York,, NY 10011
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.datasociety.net

Microsoft Research ( email )

One Memorial Drive, 12th Floor
Cambridge, MA 02142
United States

HOME PAGE: http://research.microsoft.com/

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