Episode from the podcastWith a Side of Knowledge

On Personal Data, Hyper-Targeting, and Privacy—Kirsten Martin, Notre Dame

Released Thursday, 12th November 2020
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Before the pandemic, we were the show that invited scholars, makers, and professionals out to brunch for informal conversations about their work, and we look forward to being that show again one day. But for now, we’re recording remotely to maintain physical distancing.

It’s still a pretty fantastic job.

Kirsten Martin is a faculty member in Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business and a faculty affiliate of the Notre Dame Technology Ethics Center. Recognized nationally for her expertise in privacy, technology, and corporate responsibility, she joined the University this fall and holds the William P. and Hazel B. White Center Chair of Technology Ethics.

Kirsten’s research, including studies of online privacy and the ethics of data aggregation, has been funded by the National Science Foundation, and she serves as the technology and business ethics editor for the Journal of Business Ethics. Earlier this year, Columbia University Press published her co-authored book The Power of AND: Responsible Business Without Trade-Offs.

Kirsten and host Ted Fox started their conversation with what does and does not tend to bother people about their data being gathered through websites and apps—and how most of us don’t realize the extent to which that’s happening. They spent some time on her research on location data in particular.

From there, they talked about things we, as consumers, can do to at least mitigate the spread of our personal data, and why she’s skeptical of any argument from industry that contends governmental regulation would be too costly. They wrapped up with a question inspired by her new book—namely:

When it comes to business, who is a business in business for?

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