Consumer behaviour closely predicts politices, race, income, education, gender

In 2018, economists Marianne Bertrand and Emir Kamenica at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business showed that national divisions are so entrenched that details of what Americans buy, do, and watch can be used to predict, sometimes with more than 90% accuracy, their politics, race, income, education, and gender. In a paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, the economists taught machine algorithms to detect patterns in decades of responses to three long-running surveys. Owning a pet - or a flashlight - were, in 2016, the top two consumer product predictors that the respondent is white. 

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2018/07/10/rich-people-prefer-grey-poupon-white-people-own-pets-data-behind-cultural-divide/
tags: data mining, inequality, Naional Bureau of Economics, politics, consumer behaviour, social attitudes

Writer: Andre van Dam
Publication: Washington Post
 

What is Privacy International calling for?

Limit data analysis by design

As nearly every human interaction now generates some form of data, systems should be designed to limit the invasiveness of data analysis by all parties in the transaction and networking.

Control over intelligence

Individuals should have control over the data generated about their activities, conduct, devices, and interactions, and be able to determine who is gaining this intelligence and how it is to be used.

Identities under our control

Individuals must be able to selectively disclose their identity, generate new identities, pseudonyms, and/or remain anonymous. 

We may challenge consequential decisions

Individuals should be able to know about, understand, question and challenge consequential decisions that are made about them and their environment. This means that controllers too should have an insight into and control over this processing.