The reputation economy is one where ratings given to service providers are broken down to produce a value on each person or organization. This is true for drivers of Uber or hosts in Airbnb. This social graph determines the worth of every person. In fact, a study says that in the US alone seventy percent of companies scan candidates’ social media ratings during talent recruitment rounds. Such methodology however is flawed. As an example, one can cite the fact that nearly four-fifths of Americans use Facebook, but far lower numbers similarly use Twitter or Instagram. This prevents genuine triangulation across the three fronts. There is a lot of frivolous data available which can lead to unintended results if weighed too much importance. Similarly, a lot of algorithms go wrong such as COMPAS used by the US justice system which has been proven to be racially biased. An unintended consequence of the reputation economy is that everyone is being judged all the time. A lot of service providers have adopted the stance of “social cooling” where they are expected to remain silent. With data protection now such a major point of discussion globally, this reputation economy will similarly need to be scrutinized for its effect on people.


Uploaded Date:13 February 2018

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