While the author of this article is focusing on the “privacy” issues arising from research (Reality mining) using data found with new technologies, I think he highlights a means to battle information asymmetries (IA). IA leads to situations including moral hazards and I think act like a cancer on markets — and can lead to market failures. So, can technologies that defeat IA be a good (thing)?
And, so far as privacy is concerned, perhaps we should remember the not too distant past:
“The new information tools symbolized by the Internet are radically changing the possibility of how we can organize large-scale human efforts,” said Thomas W. Malone, director of the M.I.T. Center for Collective Intelligence.
“For most of human history, people have lived in small tribes where everything they did was known by everyone they knew,” Dr. Malone said. “In some sense we’re becoming a global village. Privacy may turn out to have become an anomaly.”
Some links to follow:
- Alex Pentland, a professor at the Media Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- Michael Macy, a sociologist at Cornell
- Deborah Estrin, director of the center and a computer scientist at U.C.L.A.
- The Media Lab
- Center for Embedded Networked Sensing at the University of California, Los Angeles