Datafication, Trump and the Politics of Personalised Economies
309 Regent St
Marylebone, London W1B 2HT
Jennifer Pybus (Kings College): Datafication and the Politics of Personalised Economies
The inventor of the Worldwide Web, Tim Berners-Lee marked it with three collective challenges: 1) the loss of control of our personal data, 2) the concentration of ownership and algorithmic practices which are facilitating the intensification and spread of misinformation and 3) the need for more accountability and regulation around political advertising. When all of these concerns are taken together, a new challenge emerges: the intensification of personalised economies, predicated on the content silos we increasingly operate within on digital platforms.
Jennifer Pybus’ talk will consider how advertising platforms like Facebook or companies like Cambridge Analytica leveraged vast amounts of data to produce granulated, psychographic profiles that match voters with targeted political messages as it was the case with the first Facebook President, Donald Trump. Should datafication be uniquely understood as an economic process? Or should be equally discussed as a means to garner political influence?
About the speaker
Dr. Jennifer Pybus is a Lecturer in Digital Culture and Society at King’s College London. Her research focuses on the diverse ways in which our digital lives are being datafied, turned into social big data that fuels our increasingly personalised, data intensive economy. Her current research is looking at the politics of datafication and everyday life, specifically in relation to those critical points of tension that lie at the intersections between digital culture, Big Data and emerging advertising and marketing practices. Part of this work focuses on the political economy of social media platforms, display ad economies, the analytics of search engine optimization and the rise of new sites wherein data can be exchanged for value, particularly within the mobile ecosystem.
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