Summer - Fall 2018 Data Together Reading Group

Oct 31, 2018

The goal of this “syllabus” is to identify some themes that drive Data Together as a project & as a politics, and to find some readings that help us understand those themes better.



A view on the decentralized (distributed) web

Just getting us all on the same page about this very, err… central question, and also working through distinctions between similar terms (especially) decentralized, distributed, federated, p2p.



Sometimes when we talk about Data Together we use phrases like “communities taking ownership of their data”. What do we mean, and why is this language important to us?

How should we think about “ownership” as a value, and in what ways are individual and collective ownership different from each other?



Sometimes, instead of ownership, we talk about a “commons”. How ought the commons to be governed, and by whom?


Centralization vs. Decentralization (and Peer-to-peer, Federation)

Now that we've thought more about possession and ownership let's return to thinking about just how decentralization differs from centralizations (and whether or how peer-to-peer or federation fit in)!



Lately we've been hearing some interesting critiques of “privacy as a concept and moral imperative”. Let's see if we think they make sense.



Why do we care about justice (rather than alternative descriptions of how we ought to act)? Let's explore through popular framings of justice as what is fair as well as social justice (which includes environmental justice, data justice, design justice).