ISPs and Internet Privacy

Back in October, the FCC passed a law that never went into effect. This law would have required that Internet Service Providers receive explicit consent from consumers if sensitive data like financial or health information, or browsing history were to be shared or sold. The law never went into effect because Congress repealed it recently.

Today advertisers’ audiences are spread across devices. Internet Service Providers are the missing piece of information that advertisers need to connect internet users across devices. There is an incredible amount of user behavior data in this. This would greatly increase the amount of data that is mined from people and sold to companies.

For advertisers, the most interested and valuable data is search, social media data and ISPs can get them closer to understanding this.  Would this give marketers and advertisers too much of an insight into consumers?  Or because this is the time of instant gratification,  do today’s consumers want hyper targeted advertisements to cut out media noise?



What is ‘Social’ by ‘Social Definitions’?

Social media – we live by it, companies are desperately trying to grasp it, and your older relatives are telling you it is rotting your brain. (Funny thing is they use it more than anyone!)

We are all familiar with the concept- create your profile, build your friend base…use it…use it…use it. But what actually is a social network and what makes it social? Why are all website social media? You can interact with people on them. You can create a profile on some of them, make comments, and engage with others, but many of our favorite websites that do this are not considered ‘social’ by the ‘social definition’.  So, what is a social network and what defines it? 

What is a social network?

Social networks are virtual communities, usually profile based, that bring people together who share certain interests or ideas, to interact with each other, make new friends, and post media. On social networks, millions of different people can create new content to be distributed, shared, or altered. Sounds similar to a website right? Wrong, there are 3 distinct features that a social network must have to define it as ‘social’.

What defines a social network?

A social networking site is defined as a web-based service that allows individuals to:

  1. Construct a public or semi-public profile within a bounded system. 
  2. Articulate a list of other users with whom they share a connection. 
  3. View and traverse their list of connection and those made by others within in the system.

This defines a ‘true’ social network, according to a 2007 scholarly article by Boyd and Ellison.

Now that you know the true definition of a social network, which platforms that you use are ‘social’ by ‘social definitions’?



The Internet … 30 Years Ago

In a land far, far away, there was no modern day internet. Today we: send emails; make calls; share media and information, and develop relationships over the internet. A study by Pew Research Center conducted in December 2015, found that 73% of people who live in the United States use the internet daily.

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The internet is everything superficial to us. But in the year 1957, the internet as we know it did not exist. What was the internet like in 1957 and what concepts help shape it into the internet of today?

The Internet in 1957

In the year 1957, computers only worked on one task at a time. This was called batch processing. Computers were extremely large machines and had to be stored in special cool rooms. Developers were not able to work directly with them. This indirect programming leads to many computer bugs.

Remote Connections – The First Step

In 1957, remote connections were installed so developers could work directly on computers.

Time Sharing – Another One

Time sharing is the sharing of the processing power of one computer with multiple users. The idea of time sharing was first introduced in 1957 and became the first concept in computer technology as we know it today.

The Cold War Heats Up The Internet

The next step in the development of the internet was on October 4, 1957, when the Soviet Union launched the satellite Sputnik 1.  This was the Earth’s first official satellite in space. The United States fired back with a technology of their own, DARPA. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, also known as DARPA, was the large scale knowledge transferring system. From DARPA’s central role in the information revolution that helped further the development of ARPANET.  The Advanced Research Projects Agency Network, also known as ARPANET, was an early packet switching network. It was also the first network to implement the protocol suite TCP/IP.

Packet switching and the protocol suite TCP/IP were fundamental concepts in the development of the internet. Check out the whole history of the internet.