My name is danah boyd and I'm a Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research and the founder/president of Data & Society. Buzzwords in my world include: privacy, context, youth culture, social media, big data. I use this blog to express random thoughts about whatever I'm thinking.

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Archive

Put an End to Reporting on Election Polls

We now know that the US election polls were wrong. Just like they were in Brexit. Over the last few months, I’ve told numerous reporters and people in the media industry that they should be wary of the polling data they’re seeing, but I was generally ignored and dismissed. I wasn’t alone — two computer scientists whom […]

Data & Civil Rights: What do we know? What don’t we know?

From algorithmic sentencing to workplace analytics, data is increasingly being used in areas of society that have had longstanding civil rights issues.  This prompts a very real and challenging set of questions: What does the intersection of data and civil rights look like? When can technology be used to enable civil rights? And when are […]

Data & Society: Call for Fellows

Over the last six months, I’ve been working to create the Data & Society Research Institute to address the social, technical, ethical, legal, and policy issues that are emerging because of data-centric technological development.  We’re still a few months away from launching the Institute, but we’re looking to identify the inaugural class of fellows. If you know […]

where “nothing to hide” fails as logic

Every April, I try to wade through mounds of paperwork to file my taxes. Like most Americans, I’m trying to follow the law and pay all of the taxes that I owe without getting screwed in the process. I try and make sure that every donation I made is backed by proof, every deduction is […]

Regulating the Use of Social Media Data

If you were to walk into my office, I’d have a pretty decent sense of your gender, your age, your race, and other identity markers. My knowledge wouldn’t be perfect, but it would give me plenty of information that I could use to discriminate against you if I felt like it. The law doesn’t prohibit […]

“Transparency is Not Enough”

At Gov2.0 this week, I gave a talk on the importance of information literacy when addressing transparency of government data: “Transparency is Not Enough” I address everything from registered sex offenders to what happens when politicians don’t like data to the complexities of interpretation.  In doing so, I make three key points: Information is power, […]