Is small beautiful? #BigData


(Article written exclusively for India Today)

Recent news about the Cambridge Analytica scandal has shocked the world and given us an understanding as to the damage social media can do. It is indeed a new form of mass scale psychological warfare.

Cambridge Analytica used the tools in the Trump campaign in the US presidential election in 2016 and even in India. The question lies as to how private is your data. Rarely any of us even bother to read through terms and conditions while signing up on new websites/apps.

Disclaimer: I may or may not have to enslaved my future generations into slavery by ticking one of those "I accept the terms and conditions" box.


It is also quite fascinating to know how these algorithms make your social profile. If by analysing my weekly consumption of puppy videos you can figure out what is going on my mind and what how politically inclined I am, you have my money.

Like all concerned people, I too quickly downloaded my whole Facebook data to see what all information they have regarding me. Amongst other random things, came across a picture of me as a toddler wearing a frock tagged by my sister. Now don't judge me. Irish grown up men still wear frocks. Thankfully, my fashion sense evolved as in I'm not into cross-dressing anymore.

Hypothetically if I was to become the prime minister of India in an alternate universe and someone unearthed that picture, I believe the nation should feel embarrassed for it, not me. So, I don't really care about online surveillance any more..

Soon enough another campaign started getting viral which was the #DeleteFacebook campaign where people pledged to delete their Facebook accounts. Which bring me to the point that pretty much all the apps you use have fairly large amounts of data about you.

Be it Google, Twitter, Zomato, Uber etc, which even if explicitly shared to advertisers by companies is still prone to data hacks at any given time.

For the record, Zomato, you cannot keep showing me dal makhni and butter chicken pictures to sway my opinion. I have been made to believe by scientists that we humans are an evolved species and are able to make rational choices.