messengerDaniel Newman of Forbes recently wrote, “Over the last month there has been an unfathomable amount of content published about the massive privacy intrusion that is Facebook Messenger. With the ability to intrude into the lives of its users in ways that the NSA would never think to, it isn’t a surprise that the new download brought such strong opinions; many of which served as recommendations to not download the application. The good news about the widespread dialogue on messenger is that it brought to light the issues that surround privacy of data. Further implicating what some of us have always known. “When the service is free, the user is the product.” Make sense? In other words, when companies like Facebook create applications that we use in our everyday lives, for free, the real price is in what we sacrifice for the right to use the application for free, our data.”

Newman continues, “Perhaps the only word more abused and used in the tech space than ‘Internet of Things’ is ‘Big Data.’ In itself, Big Data means very little. It is merely the massive collection of information that resides out in cyberspace that is waiting to be somehow organized, visualized, contextualized and ‘Ized’ in some other TBD capacity. For Big Data it comes down to what you do with it, otherwise it is like an English major staring at endless strings of PHP or Java; it’s meaningless.”

He opines, “In a world where the web is moving from a search state to a semantic state it is without question our data that makes this possible. In a recent series of articles I posted about the semantic web it talked about the marriage that is taking place between Big Data, Semantic Search and User Generated Content that is shifting the way we explore the web. If you consider this as a possibility or a reality then you will quickly realize for the web to be semantic, it is dependent upon us as users to feed it our data. And in order for the web to collect our data we need to voluntarily (even if not knowingly) give up our privacy so websites and brands can sell and use it to create this new online experience.”

Do you agree with Mr. Newman? Read more here, then leave your thoughts in the comments.

Image: Courtesy Facebook