Should Tech Companies Be Transparent?

How much of your data is Facebook really collecting? What does Netflix take into consideration when recommending movies and TV shows to you? Is Apple really slowing down your iPhone on purpose?
It’s hard to answer these questions definitively because we don’t have all the answers. And we don’t have the answers because big tech companies like these haven’t provided them to us. In a world with more tech transparency, these might be non-issues; we might have full access to all relevant information for how the company works and how it interacts with us.
Transparency is valuable in many contexts, building trust, improving the transmission and understanding of information, and increasing accountability. But is a more transparent tech industry something we really want?
Motivations for Low Transparency
It’s easy to position tech companies as being evil or nefarious for one simple reason: like all companies, they operate in their own self-interest. Google, Apple, Netflix, and other giants do…

Written By: Timothy Carter

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