How Data Describes My Life

Who cares if I’m being tracked?

I hear this all the time. Usually in discussions around privacy.

The argument usually starts with the condemnation of the fact that everything we do online is tracked. It is part of an unspoken ‘social contract’ we have agreed to by default with the internet.

You give me a place to stalk my friends, I give you data about where I’m at, what I’m eating and what I’m doing. I’m sure you’ll be a good steward of that data.

It will take a longer essay that this short post to go into depth with this discussion. But I decided to ask myself:

What data is there about me, that anyone can access?

Data about me

I came across this at work today: my Github profile.

Well now this here’s interesting. There are a lot of things you can infer with this simple data set:

  • You did not work on any code in November.
  • You have starting coding more starting February of this year.
  • I have no life, because I’m committing code on weekends.

But this data also raises some questions:

  • You’ve been working hard lately, eh?
  • Did you just start coding in July?
  • Where the fuck where you in November?

So how can this be used against me?

I don’t know. It’s probably harmless.

Either way, I think it’s interesting that so much data about my life is public like this. I’m not complaining, I’m agreeing to this after all, by continuing to have a public Github profile.

I just wonder how much more data I am unknowingly giving to corporations (and the government by extension) about my life.

Do I have something to hide? You bet I do. Maybe in another post I’ll talk about what happened in November.