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The Right to Big Data.

  1. May 21, 2012 #1
    The Right to "Big Data."

    "Troves of Personal Data, Forbidden to Researchers"
    The issue is that not every scientist is allowed access to "big data".

    Also, as it says in the first quote, there is no way to check on the papers based on exclusive-access "big data". They might well be fraudulent.

  2. jcsd
  3. May 21, 2012 #2
    Re: The Right to "Big Data."

    I don't believe they have a "right" to see the data. Although, for the purposes of research endeavors, these companies should be obligated to release the data to those who'd like to see the results.

    But even though this is a social science issue currently, it will definitely spill over to the hard sciences where data should be released but companies rather hold out on the public sector. This is definitely an issue in my opinion, but I also have an issue with someone saying they have a right to see it.
  4. May 21, 2012 #3
    Re: The Right to "Big Data."

    The "right" is not to see the data in the first place, but to be able to verify it when you're checking the validity of a paper written by someone who was given access:

  5. May 21, 2012 #4
    Re: The Right to "Big Data."

    Once again confirming that rich people can afford more stuff than poor people.
  6. May 21, 2012 #5
    Re: The Right to "Big Data."

    It's all settled in the Freedom of Information Act. It has been subject to intense discussions in a branch of science that cannot be discussed here.
  7. May 21, 2012 #6
    Re: The Right to "Big Data."

    Are you saying Google is now the government?
  8. May 21, 2012 #7
    Re: The Right to "Big Data."

    Looks like peer review will be relegated to "spell checking the paper". Whether it’s secret communications regarding global warming data or drug effectiveness studies, only the profession overseeing the publication can force the data issues, IMO. That which cannot be peer reviewed shouldn’t be published.
  9. May 21, 2012 #8
    Re: The Right to "Big Data."

    I agree completely. This seems to be the big issue here. It sort of defeats the purpose of peer review if you can't well, have peers review it.
  10. May 21, 2012 #9
    Re: The Right to "Big Data."

    Isn't this also a problem with "black box" software that is often used in simulations and calculations? I know my undergrad research advisor complains about that sometimes (like when he used such a "black box" in his 2000 paper that I'm now expanding on). Seems to be a related, but older, issue.
  11. May 21, 2012 #10
    Re: The Right to "Big Data."

    A company doesn't have to release data, but if they don't any work they "publish" should definitely be criticised and viewed with scepticism. They are essentially just PR and ads, not science.

    For example, Rolls Royce suppress their data the time. They don't go about publishing results of it though...
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