Pay For Art Using Your Personal Data
Customers gave up personal data for art pieces to take home at this London based pop-up store
London based street artist Ben Eine recently opened a pop-up shop for his work; instead of paying with cash, however, customers at this the Data Dollar Store have to give up their personal information. The shop, opened in collaboration with cybersecurity company Kaspersky Lab, is meant to make customers reevaluate the information they often freely give away to social media giants. “I’m concerned about how that information is used and why are we not rewarded for giving this information away,” Eine told Cnet. “Companies use that information and target us to sell products, to feed us information that we wouldn’t necessarily look at.”
The store was set up in a temporary space at the Old Street Underground station in London. When visitors entered the store, an assistant showed them the purchasing options: giving up three photos or screenshots of your recent text or email conversations for a mug; giving up the last three photos on your Camera Roll, or the last three text messages sent, for a tshirt; or handing your phone over to the assistant to select any five photos to keep, publicly displayed on a large TV screen in the store for the next two days (you can attempt to barter for which photos they’ll pick, but the choice is up to them).
The artist himself was unequivocal about his stance on the matter: if someone asked to select five photos from his photo to display on a monitor in exchange for a £150 print, he’d say, “no way!” The store is meant to raise awareness about the sometimes risky informational exchanges that are happening all the time online. According to Kaspersky Lab, while 74 percent of survey respondents were unconcerned about data security, 41 percent were unprotected from potential threats and 20 percent have been affected by cybercrime.
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Matt is the co-founder of Datacoup and the co-organizer of #PDNYC, New York’s largest meetup for discussing the pros and cons of living in the world of ubiquitous digitized personal data. Acknowledging that regular people are the ones generating the information that gets collected and sold for an well over $15 billion a year, Matt founded Datacoup to provide a way for people to get part of that revenue. By using Datacoup, people are informed where their data is collected and receive a portion of the revenue when it’s sold. Prior to founding Datacoup, Matt had a career on Wall Street working in fixed income with Deutsche Bank Securities, CRT Capital and Lehman Brothers.