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How companies, government use vast data collections to build your online identity

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Hamza Butt
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Companies like Facebook and Google can gather information across all of your devices.

You’ve heard that advertisers are keeping track of every online site you visit. They keep track of the data to try to determine what you’re likely to buy. Well, that online data collection is just the beginning.

John Cheney-Lippold, assistant professor of American culture at the University of Michigan and author of the book We Are Data: Algorithms and the Making of Our Digital Selves, helped explain the difference between data that is trying to sell you a product, and data that truly knows who you are as a person.

“I think we should take the idea of U.S. privacy law, which is the right to be let alone, and think about it in an a subject sense,” Cheney-Lippold said. “How am I in this moment being controlled?”

Listen above to learn how you can own your sense of privacy in our datafied world.  

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