Information, the Internet & You
There's a lot in the news these days about various internet companies, their privacy policies, what they're doing with the information users provide, and how their policies and decisions are affecting your internet experience. Staying on top of all the ins and outs is challenging, but being informed and learning how to negotiate the internet is crucial. You deserve to know about how the decisions of internet companies can affect your personal data, what you see on the internet, and whether the information you find is neutral, biased, authoritative or of questionable origin.
One of KCPL's goals is to help its users develop strong information literacy skills, including being well-educated on how to manage online information. If you're interested in learning more about the ideas and issues surrounding the intersection of you and the internet, take a look at this round-up of books. (To request one of these books, click its title and use the My Account feature of KCPL's online catalog to place a hold.) If you're interested in finding more on these or other topics, just ask! We'd be happy to help you find other books and resources.
I Know Who You Are and I Saw What You Did: Social Networks and the Death of Privacy
by Lori Andrews
A leading specialist on social networks writes a shocking exposé of the widespread misuse of our personal online data and creates a Constitution for the web to protect us. Social networks are the defining cultural movement of our time. Social networks offer freedom. An ordinary individual can be a reporter, alerting the world to breaking news of a natural disaster or a political crisis. A layperson can be a scientist, participating in a crowd sourced research project or an investigator, helping cops solve a crime. But as we work and chat and date over the web, traditional rights may be slipping away. What the author proposes is a Constitution for the web, to extend our rights to this wild new frontier.
The Filter Bubble: What the Internet is Hiding from You
by Eli Pariser
The hidden rise of personalization on the Internet is controlling--and limiting--the information we consume. In 2009, Google began customizing its search results. Instead of giving you the most broadly popular result, Google now tries to predict what you are most likely to click on. Though the phenomenon has gone largely undetected until now, personalized filters are sweeping the Web, creating individual universes of information for each of us. Data companies track your personal information to sell to advertisers, from your political leanings to the hiking boots you just browsed on Zappos. In a personalized world, we will increasingly be typed and fed only news that is pleasant, familiar, and confirms our beliefs--and because these filters are invisible, we won't know what is being hidden from us. Our past interests will determine what we are exposed to in the future, leaving less room for the unexpected encounters that spark creativity, innovation, and the democratic exchange of ideas
The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains
by Nicholas Carr
A compelling exploration of the Internet’s intellectual and cultural consequences. As Carr describes how human thought has been shaped through the centuries by “tools of the mind”—from the alphabet to maps, to the printing press, the clock, and the computer—he interweaves a fascinating account of recent discoveries in neuroscience by such pioneers as Michael Merzenich and Eric Kandel. Our brains, the historical and scientific evidence reveals, change in response to our experiences. The technologies we use to find, store, and share information can literally reroute our neural pathways.
The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires
by Tim Wu
As Wu's sweeping history shows, each of the new media of the twentieth century- radio, telephone, television, and film- was born free and open. Each invited unrestricted use and enterprising experiment until some would-be mogul battled his way to total domination. Explaining how invention begets industry and industry begets empire- a progress often blessed by government, typically with stifling consequences for free expression and technical innovation alike- Wu identifies a time-honored pattern in the maneuvers of today's great information powers.