Chapter 3. The Five Cs
What does it take to build a good data product or service? Not just a product or service thatâs useful, or one thatâs commercially viable, but one that uses data ethically and responsibly.
We often talk about a productâs technology or its user experience, but we rarely talk about how to build a data product in a responsible way that puts the user in the center of the conversation. Those products are badly needed. News that people âdonât trustâ the data products they useâor that use themâis common. While Facebook has received the most coverage, lack of trust isnât limited to a single platform. Lack of trust extends to nearly every consumer internet company, to large traditional retailers, and to data collectors and brokers in industry and government.
Users lose trust because they feel abused by malicious ads; they feel abused by fake and misleading content, and they feel abused by âact first, and apologize profusely laterâ cultures at many of the major online companies. And users ought to feel abused by many abuses they donât even know about. Why was their insurance claim denied? Why werenât they approved for that loan? Were those decisions made by a system that was trained on biased data? The slogan goes, âMove fast and break things.â But what if society is broken?
Data collection is a big business. Data is valuable: âthe new oil,â as the Economist proclaimed. Weâve known that for some time. But the public provides the ...