Americans’ Attitudes on Digital Footprints (Pew Internet & American Life Project)

I wanted to get more information about “online culture” within the US, since it is still, at least for now, the standard for what an online society looks like in terms of debating privacy versus openness, online presence, and reputation.

In December 2007, the Pew Internet & American Life Project released the findings from its surveys on “digital footprints” and “online identity management and search in the age of transparency”.  You can read the full report (PDF) online, and the questionnaire they used, as well.

It is interesting to study the attitudes versus the actions of social networking users when it comes to privacy versus openness.  The study found that “[m]ost internet users are not concerned about the amount of information available about them online, and most do not take steps to limit that information.” Read More »

Online Cultural Values of Openness and Privacy

Hi, I’m Ben Turner and this is my introductory post. I’m one of the two junior Yahoo! fellows working with Gaurav this year. I am a second-year Master of Science in Foreign Service candidate studying international development, technology policy, and social business entrepreneurship. I am a former US Army veteran of Iraq and have worked as a web designer and a daytrader as well.

I have a personal web site at http://benturner.com/ and my online activities are streamed through FriendFeed. Please feel free to add me!

Research Topic

My research will focus on the relationship between openness and privacy (and transparency, which I consider to be a product of that interaction). My feeling is that there are different expectations and standards for openness and privacy, depending on which cultural sphere you analyze them in; for example, what the online community finds value in is at odds with what the offline community wants. Online and offline values can also vary across cultures and countries: Brazil, Russia, India, China, and the US are all sliding into different models with different priorities for social networking, expression of ideas, velocity of online business transactions, and so on. Read More »