Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Is data the new liquid gold?

Many companies including Facebook, Apple and Google view data - especially mobile data - as liquid gold. And they are probably right, as there appears to be promising ways to monetize data, with operators in an especially strong position to capitalize on this trend.

But are there moral considerations?

At a recent Informa SDM event in London representatives from operators all around the world shared their experiences and strategies on handling the available subscriber data that can be consolidated from their networks.

They discussed the real social graphs versus the Facebook graph, business applications possible with this data, and, of course, the thorny issues related to privacy.

A Swedish newspaper called Dagens Nyheter published a related article recently. The article discusses how 800 million Facebook subscribers receive suggestions about songs to listen to, video clips to watch, games to play, stuff to buy, events to visit and people to get familiar with.

We then “repay” the company with our own updates, invitations, links and photos.

So have you ever discussed your love for Justin Bieber, Bob Dylan or U2 with friends on Facebook?

Ever been surprised when you receive a subsequent offer from CDON to buy their latest signed record?

This is targeted marketing at its best. I think it’s wonderful to finally be reminded about what I like and what I might want to purchase...

Or is it?


  1. I'm not sure it's so wonderful...do we really need reminding that we like something?

  2. If data is so valuable, why should consumers give it away for free?

  3. It depends on whether these types of services are abused or not.

    Take Spotify for example. They have a service that makes suggestions based on my listening habits. Ive been introduced to a lot of great music this way.

    I dont always have the time to search through countless playlists in the hope of discovering fresh music.

    So, these suggestions are a welcome addition to my listening habits.

    I imagine up and coming bands really see the value in such exposure. Whether Dylan, The Rolling Stones and other heavy-weights agree is another question.

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