The Black Box Society: The Secret Algorithms That Control Money and Information

The Black Box Society: The Secret Algorithms That Control Money and Information

Frank Pasquale / Jun 15, 2019

The Black Box Society The Secret Algorithms That Control Money and Information Every day corporations are connecting the dots about our personal behavior silently scrutinizing clues left behind by our work habits and Internet use The data compiled and portraits created are incr

  • Title: The Black Box Society: The Secret Algorithms That Control Money and Information
  • Author: Frank Pasquale
  • ISBN: 9780674368279
  • Page: 163
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Every day, corporations are connecting the dots about our personal behavior silently scrutinizing clues left behind by our work habits and Internet use The data compiled and portraits created are incredibly detailed, to the point of being invasive But who connects the dots about what firms are doing with this information The Black Box Society argues that we all need toEvery day, corporations are connecting the dots about our personal behavior silently scrutinizing clues left behind by our work habits and Internet use The data compiled and portraits created are incredibly detailed, to the point of being invasive But who connects the dots about what firms are doing with this information The Black Box Society argues that we all need to be able to do so and to set limits on how big data affects our lives.Hidden algorithms can make or ruin reputations, decide the destiny of entrepreneurs, or even devastate an entire economy Shrouded in secrecy and complexity, decisions at major Silicon Valley and Wall Street firms were long assumed to be neutral and technical But leaks, whistleblowers, and legal disputes have shed new light on automated judgment Self serving and reckless behavior is surprisingly common, and easy to hide in code protected by legal and real secrecy Even after billions of dollars of fines have been levied, underfunded regulators may have only scratched the surface of this troubling behavior.Frank Pasquale exposes how powerful interests abuse secrecy for profit and explains ways to rein them in Demanding transparency is only the first step An intelligible society would assure that key decisions of its most important firms are fair, nondiscriminatory, and open to criticism Silicon Valley and Wall Street need to accept as much accountability as they impose on others.

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      Posted by:Frank Pasquale
      Published :2018-010-10T18:15:59+00:00

    About "Frank Pasquale"

      • Frank Pasquale

        Frank Pasquale Is a well-known author, some of his books are a fascination for readers like in the The Black Box Society: The Secret Algorithms That Control Money and Information book, this is one of the most wanted Frank Pasquale author readers around the world.


    116 Comments

    1. In The Black Box Society, there are two meanings of "black box" - the first is the valuable and almost indestructible recording devices found on airplanes. The second is a system where you cannot identify its mechanisms - where you cannot tell how input becomes output. Pasquale focuses on there areas of 'black box' algorithms: reputation, search, and finance. Reputation is how algorithms rate and describe individuals, inferred from their visiting and consumption patterns online. Search is closel [...]


    2. "Corporate secrecy expands as the privacy of human beings contracts." Looking at the amount of data being amassed about each of us, the transparency or lack of it around use of this data, and the fact that it can be sold again and again, including to governments, the author warns us about the black box - the data recorder, the unknown workings. He tells us that giant corporations, banks and dodgy dealers benefit. Well, just the other day Western Union was fined mightily for enabling money launde [...]


    3. This book gets it title from double-meaning of the term 'black box':It can refer to a recording device, like the data-monitoring systems in planes, trains and cars. Or it can mean a system whose workings are mysterious; we can observe its inputs and outputs, but we cannot tell how one becomes the other.Pasquale has his sights set on the worlds of technology and finance, since it's here we find the most rampant use of algorithms. Here in Europe I imagine we are most familiar with the tech algorit [...]


    4. "when powerful actors are profiting from failure, we can probably expect a good deal more of it in the future." (p. 191)"The grand illusion of contemporary finance is that endlessly processing claims to future wealth will somehow lead to a more productive economy there is a good reason that these entities strive so hard to keep their methods secret: pull the curtain, and the economy's wizards look like little more than organizers of contests they'd never be able to compete in." (201)


    5. This book, particularly the first three chapters, really made me think critically about society, technology, information, and freedom. The idea behind a "black box" didn't originate with Pasquale, but he is referring to it in two ways: first, the keeper of information (e.g. a flight's coordinates), and second, a mysterious box with inputs and outputs--computers, the human brain, cars, and so on. The problem is that increasingly these boxes, in the latter definition, are increasingly opaque and o [...]


    6. In cybernetics a black box is a potentially complex system that is inscrutable and opaque to us but for the information that is fed into it and that which emerges from it. The book contains a considerable array of information on opaque systems and practices within credit ratings, search engines and algorithmic trading and sets out the flaws in these practices. Instead of proposing radical solutions, it suggests a raft of sensible policy changes that may ameliorate some of the damage done by opac [...]


    7. I wasn't thrilled.Let's get this out of the way first: Pasquale's got his head squared on his shoulders the right way. The topics are engaging and genuinely pressing areas of public policy, and he uses examples from history that are illustrative and helpful. Issues like algorithmic prejudice, speculative data financialization, and shadowy technocratic governance are super important and super complex, and I value any intelligent confrontation with them. So that's all here, and it's all good.For s [...]


    8. Disappointing. Proceeds as a series of anecdotes with commentary, rather than having any sort of overarching story to it.


    9. [the very last book in my 2017 reading challenge!!!]Covers similar ground to Jaron Lanier's Who Owns The Future? but has a much better take imo.


    10. This book is both a litany of problems caused by the unethical use of data and a call for reform; both are useful. The first 140 pages of the book boil down published news and technical reports about credit ratings, privacy violations, biased search engine results, rogue spies, and similar issues in data mining. These chapters will furnish a review for people who have kept up with such trends for legal, policy, or technical reasons, but will probably provide all readers with new information as w [...]


    11. While I can't say that I agree with everything in the book, it is most definitely eye-opening and suspicion confirming at the same time. I feel that folks who want to be informed of things in our rapidly changing society ought to engage with the ideas presented in this book.In particular, I think some focus on the issues here rather than some of the other circuses we've focused on in the past couple of years would be beneficial in many ways for our nation.


    12. Have you ever why your credit limit differs from your friend who earns around the same? Why do creepy ads follow your social media and email(Facebook/Gmail)? What are the drawbacks of taking your activity online whether it is medicines purchase or online shopping? Why do technology companies insist on full data/rights/cookies from you but protect their own trade secrets?Why is your resume getting no interview calls(hint-this could be a simple tweak). In this book covering multiple domains, Frank [...]


    13. I got rather tired of the google-bashing, but overall this is an important book to internalize. Here is a question. On page 114, Pasquale writes, "Just as an unduly high credit score could help a consumer get a loan he had no chance of paying back". Don't credit scores determine your interest rate, not the amount of the loan you qualify for?


    14. Pasquale walks the line between alarmist and wolf-crying. While he makes many good points about the rise of algorithms, his blatant leftist political views may make them harder to swallow for some. The selection of topics (and at times their treatment) can feel scattershot, but the writing is mostly peppy and well-paced.


    15. Few ideas constantly repeatedThe basic ideas of this are interesting and important for anyone working on technology. But, contrary to the own statements of the author, he really does not develop them well.


    16. Derivative work that is alarmist in how it identifies a very real problem, and either one-sided or vacant in its attempts at a prescription for the challenges.


    17. Largely derivative book that reinforces one's paranoia about modern business, finance, and government. Its solutions, especially "a war on systemic risk," are underwhelming.



    18. I can't say I read it cover to cover but I did get the gist of how search engines are able to more or less control what we see on line and it was scary. Let's hope their agenda is benign.




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