Not many people think about their social profiles as assets. Yet social network operators understand very well that every persons profile is in
fact an asset they leverage for economic gains.

In an earlier article titled: Security: The Weakest Human Link” we highlighted how Facebook, Google, Apple and others leverage the human networks interactions (assets) and third party developers (assets)
to create and sell the related data to eager marketers.

This is the data game afforded by the introduction of social technology that engages the human network. Facebook and others know that data represents significant economic value and when the human
network volunteers their data that represents a “free supply
of valuable assets that can be used and sold to a world of suppliers
wanting to reach the human network to sell them something, anything and

The Game Will Change

Revolutions are started when more and more people find out that institutions are misleading people and using their own assets against them. The world of all things social represents others
leveraging assets of the human network for institutional economic
gains. This game is as old as the history of humans gathered together
to leverage each others assets for collective gains then the industrial era arose and organizations began learning how to leverage human assets for organizational gains.

The same game is played by government institutions and politicians representing those institutions. Leveraging the human network to create political power used against the human network. George Washington said “If
men are to be precluded from offering their sentiments on a matter
which may involve the most serious and alarming consequences that can
invite the consideration of mankind, reason is of no use to us; the
freedom of speech may be taken away, and dumb and silent we may be led,
like sheep to the slaughter.”

It is much to be feared, as you observe, that the better kind of people being disgusted with the circumstances will have their minds prepared for any revolution whatever.

A Social Revolution?

As more and more people realize that their own social activity is being used for profit by others and without our consent we are likely to see a social revolution arise. This revolution will not be fought with
guns and armor rather with collective voices which represent “we the
people” as opposed to the institutions of profit.

A revolution (“a turnaround”) is a fundamental change in power or organizational structures that takes place in a relatively short period of time. The term revolution refers to:

  1. Complete change from one constitution to another
  2. Modification of an existing constitution.

The constitution of the human network is a set of human principles that we the people have made and agreed upon for collective value and rights. The human networks constitution enumerates and limits the powers
and functions of the marketplace. These rules together make up, i.e.
constitute, what the human network has for rights and privileges. The
rights of the human network refers specifically to a constitution
defining the fundamental political principles, and establishing the
structure, procedures, powers and duties, of those who use the human
network for profiteering from the assets of the network without consent.

By limiting the institutions own reach, the human network constitution guarantee certain rights to the people. When those rights, spoken and unspoken, are violated and the masses become aware of the
consequences of the violation then you have the beginning of a

Revolutions vary widely in terms of methods, duration, and motivating ideology. The results include major changes in culture, economy, and socio-political institutions. The social revolution is already rising
with momentum. The more profiteering of our social assets are used for
others gain and not ours the more we the people will join forces and
ignite the entire human network into a revolution against use of our
assets without consent.

For further reading on this subject I’d highly recommend Doc Searls article : Data Bubble II which starts out “In The Data Bubble, I told readers to mark the day: 31 July 2010. That’s when The Wall Street Journal published The Web’s Gold Mine: Your Secrets, subtitled A Journal investigation finds that one of the fastest-growing businesses on the Internet is the business of spying on consumers. First in a
series. That same series is now nine stories long, not counting the
introduction and a long list of related pieces. Here’s the current

  1. The Web’s Gold Mine: What They Know About You
  2. Microsoft Quashed Bid to Boost Web Privacy
  3. On the Web’s Cutting Edge: Anonymity in Name Only
  4. Stalking by Cell Phone
  5. Google Agonizes Over Privacy
  6. Kids Face Intensive Tracking on Web
  7. ‘Scrapers’ Dig Deep for Data on the Web
  8. Facebook in Privacy Breach
  9. A Web Pioneer Profiles Users By Name

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Tags: Doc, Searls, assets, bubble, chasm, data, distribution, economy, media, relationship, More…social, vetting


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Comment by Robin on November 3, 2010 at 9:12am
Nice Jay! I have to say the content of your digital footprint is becoming more and more crucial.
Comment by Lucy on November 2, 2010 at 12:47pm
Jay, what can I say. What a well thought out perception of assets. I never thought about this (obviously). Even in recruiting your electronic profile and assets also are an extension of your resume etc. They are also free uses of data for others. After a while you have no control BUT you hope that what you see if the truth. How do you weed the fact vs. fiction and still not invade the privacy. Terrific resources! I will check some of those out.

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