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Shiv Malik is the author of two books, the co-founder of the Intergenerational Foundation think tank and a former investigative journalist for the Guardian. He currently evangelizes about a new decentralized data economy for the open source project Streamr.
Who controls our data? The capture of so much information placed in the hands of so few is the most pressing technological issue of our age. The problem gives rise to weekly privacy scandals, has super-charged the growth of trillion dollar tech oligopolies and plays one of the most decisive roles in democratic outcomes.
And yet, the solutions for how to resolve this huge power imbalance are still so piecemeal. One such offering is the open data solution; make governments force everyone to share their datasets with everyone else so all can prosper. But even Tim Berners Lee, the founder of the Open Data Institute, the most stalwart organization backing the open data manifesto, .
The privacy movement has had much more success. New privacy tech – search engines such as DuckDuckGo, ad blockers, VPNs and even fresher software pioneered by the crypto community, such as zero knowledge solutions, have started to gain popular traction.