Florida Law Review Forum

danah boyd
Undoing the Neutrality of Big Data
Response to Margaret Hu, Big Data Blacklisting

The legal analysis that Margaret Hu sets forth in Big Data Blacklisting focuses on how due process—both procedural and substantive—fails to address the harms produced by big data blacklists. To make her case, she describes three types of contemporary blacklists and outlines how these blacklists have wrongfully classified and harmed numerous individuals, further noting the challenges that these people have faced in navigating a Kafka-esque system. She argues that the data-driven technologies that government agencies have access to allow them to have unprecedented power, producing new dynamics that are both legally and morally challenging. As a hybrid social scientist with a computer science foundation, I not only agree with her claims and conclusions, but also believe that what she’s seeing has deeper roots and implications than she identifies. I want to take up a few of those in response to her article, not to undermine her claims, but to buoy them with additional perspectives. Read more.