Control the distribution and negotiate the value of your personal data.
CAMBRIAN BOUNCER BOTTM
Coming soon. Stay tuned!
This AI-powered Chrome extension is a prototype of the “Bouncer Bot" (TM), an autonomous bot which will ultimately empower you to see and control the distribution of your data, information, and permissions throughout the internet. Through the Bouncer Bot, you can follow the tracking, storing, and trading of various types of your data, and then negotiate permission with, or revoke permission to access to your personal information by the service providers in question.
What is the Bouncer Bot?
Our vision is to build an autonomous bot that serves as your personal agent, recognizing and monitoring your privacy-specific digital interactions online, driven by an evolving privacy “charter” - a code of conduct that you require of digital service providers, rather than merely relying on service providers’ user agreements. This focuses their attention on what *you* need.
Based on your charter and nature of a given interaction with a service provider, the Bouncer Bot might intercede and clarify with you the permissible modes of access and available data. As conceived, future versions of the Bouncer Bot will function at a level between your end-device and the internet service providers, tagging all your data with a unique ID embedded into the files or metadata created by you in the interactions with the service provider. For instance, the ID is also embedded in visual elements (e.g. pictures or videos) to allow tracking of replications (e.g. screenshots or scans). The Bouncer Bot will track the distribution of tagged data throughout the internet in order to give you far greater control over the flow of your data by giving you the power to enable or revoke service provider access (or access by third parties with whom service providers share data) to those files and bits of information.
We want a healthy digital economy, including functioning, profitable internet businesses. But profit must never come at the expense of dignity, respect, and agency by and for individuals.
Why do we need a Bouncer Bot?
We constantly produce personal data on our devices and on the internet. This not only includes your data footprint in what you say and show on social media networks, but also metadata that you passively create during shopping, booking, dating, learning, trading or investing, medical or well-being-related activities. American companies alone spent an estimated $19 billion or more in 2018 on acquiring consumer data through third-party “data brokers” you have never heard of. Events like the Cambridge Analytica scandal in 2018, demonstrate that even when we provide consent to an internet service provider, we are still in the dark: The problems we all face are that we don’t (1) see what happens with our data and how it is being valued and kept safe, (2) have any control over how our data gets traded, (3) know what it is used for by service providers and their third-party partners, and (4) have any options for negotiating permissions, other than to go off the grid altogether, which is neither good for individuals, nor for our society or the economy.
The reason for this is the lack of leverage that we as individuals have vis-a-vis global internet firms. This is because they (A) hold most of the data about their customers’ lives, operations, and context, as well as the compute power to run customized solutions; (B) have overwhelming market concentration (power) which leaves limited choice for users, (C) have business models that often objectify users by treating them as data constructs to be monetized, rather than humans to be empowered and protected.