Mutual ownership of data – FSN

the most basic problem in social nets today ( and actually MOST data)

is that it is rare that data is actually owned by one party.  It is typically owned by at least two (see my previous example of friendship in social nets)

So this mutual ownership – this “child” data has responsibilities.  The problems typically occur when inequalities exist.  Typically I think most problems today are because of the fact that one entity believes they are the sole owner of the data.  For example, Facebook and Beacon,  they believed that purchase data was theirs to do as they pleased with it.  The funny thing is people were/are foolishly happy with letting facebook gather it.  The only became unhappy when facebook used it foolishly by revealing purchases to their peers.   Then many left or threatened to leave if facebook didn’t fix the issue.  Perfectly illustrating the joint ownership of that data.

So the normal facebook data as potentially as useful as it maybe isn’t an extreme example of inequality.  I think banks and Credit cards are an even better example.  That shared bank account  they view the data to be theirs.  When they do the security threat analysis they do not factor in YOUR cost as the individuals if your identity is stolen?  If they did view the data as mutual, they would need to add that to the equation.  Then there would be accountability for that data and banks could more easily be held legally accountable for their actions.  Nothing better than a mob of hundreds of thousands pissed off and filing a law suit of identity theft.

So how do we deal with these issues of inequality of risk in regards to this mutually owned data?  well for that we need to turn to the law.  First contracts…. (hello Lessig are you reading this?)  We need a standard of mutual data ownership – a contract to create first the acknowledgment of shared data and secondly to balance the inequality of responsibility (perhaps thru lawsuits not sure what this looks like.)

Though honestly I think the biggest issues is people’s inherent lack of awareness in regards to these inequalities…  Google has done them the public a favor in my opinion by making their transparency obvious in a social way.  Facebook’s mistakes as well.  Though I do know Google trying to protect people’s data – at the same time I am pissed because they teach BAD HABITS in regards to sharing.

And to those (I know you are reading this) that claim “I am transparent on the net!  I have nothing to hide!”  I ask…

So where’s that nekkid pic of you on the net?  Where are your bank account records?  Where are your medical records?

I don’t know anyone that is completely transparent except maybe the invisible man…

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