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With big data in mind, clamping down on my privacy settings
Carl Corry is a journalism instructor at Suffolk County Community College and freelance journalist who has held leading roles at Newsday, News 12 and Long Island Business News.
journalism, social media, digital journalism, smartphone journalism, media
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With big data in mind, clamping down on my privacy settings

After taking a dive into the concept of  “big data” this week — not the same as Big Brother, but it is omnipresent — I’m inspired to clamp down on my privacy settings for all my online accounts.

Big data is basically all the information that’s available to companies and individuals. That amount of data has grown over time, especially in the digital age, as institutions and companies seek information that will help them become more efficient and best target their audiences. This about the little key chain cards that you get from the local grocery. The company stores that information and then you get coupons and maybe even a free turkey near Thanksgiving as a result of what you’ve bought.

Big data got me to apply to Syracuse thanks to a targeted social media campaign based on my demographic and interests.

And while I acknowledge that the growth of big data is a given, and there is much to benefit from it — especially in journalism — I think there is more I can do to help keep things I wants to remain private out of the prying eyes of solicitors. It’s going to take a bit of time, but “opting out” of certain marketing schemes that many of us simply just checked on without much of a thought will prevent help prevent the never-ending emails with specials I don’t care about and the untimely calls from nonprofit organizations I never reached out to in the first place from seeking donations. Such was the case last night.

So, big data is here to stay. But I’m going to have to up my privacy game.

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