The perception and fears of sharing personal digital data in digital public space

Porter, Joel (2018) The perception and fears of sharing personal digital data in digital public space. PhD thesis, UNSPECIFIED.

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This thesis provides a critical and practice based investigation of personal fears of sharing personal digital data. In it, I explore the fears and growing tensions between the requirements to share personal information while maintaining the need to control and protect personal privacy. The emphasis of this study was to develop research through a series of multi-disciplinary, practice-based projects alongside external industry partners. I begin by exploring the rise in surveillance methods, from the Panopticon to the rise of social network sites and examine the consequences of sharing personal information online. Data sharing has been made easier through the proliferation of internet connected, mobile devices and wearable technologies that has led to a growing reciprocal trade in personal information in return for online services. In a world of ‘digital narcissism’ and perpetual life-logging brought about by the volume of shared data, modern surveillance is an increasingly manifestation of consumer activity. However, since the Snowden revelations in 2013 which revealed the National Security Agency (NSA) was spying on US citizens, the consequence of sharing personal information has led to a proliferation of leaks, thefts, and growing anxieties amongst the public, resulting in a greater awareness of privacy concerns and wariness about divulging personal information. My research focused upon those that obstruct, withhold information, and avoid contributing to sharing personal data. Therefore, my research was designed to identify the strategies available to designers working with shared data to combat fears of data surveillance and exploitation. The outcome of my research has shown, through a series of case studies, how individuals perceive the physical environment and the proximity to their data, and how data will be shared. My research was part of the innovative Creative Exchange programme, one of four Doctoral Training Centre knowledge exchange hubs funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. The aim was to develop research using multidisciplinary, practice based research projects alongside external industry partners, utilising a variety of research methods and co-design approaches to investigate concepts around the emergent subject of digital public space.

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Thesis (PhD)
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15 May 2018 13:36
Last Modified:
15 Sep 2023 01:39