From the Northeastern Section of the ACS, focusing on career management and development

December 2021
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Chemical Enterprise and Surveillance Capitalism
Filed under: Recent Posts, Observ. Trends, Alternate Career Paths
Posted by: site admin @ 2:54 pm

Computers, it was reported in 2020, quantum simulated a simple
chemical reaction.

John Pople and and Walter Kohn were awarded the Nobel for
contributions and developing the use of computers to understand
chemical structures with quantum mechanical concepts. (1998)
To my knowledge little has been described about the impact of
surveillance capitalism as described by Shoshana Zuboff on
the chemical enterprise.
Sure, we can order chemicals using computers, manage
accounting and monitor reactions by computers, but in many
realms from politics to social physics to organizational behavior
to raw economics, surveillance capitalism is dominating 
21st century life. 
It is commodification of personal data.  The
extension to chemistry where data is compiled and analyzed 
with computers is only a matter of time to find applications.  

6 Responses to “Chemical Enterprise and Surveillance Capitalism”

  1. site admin Says:

    stealing corporate secrets
    scooping emerging concepts
  2. site admin Says:

    Paragraph from Zuboff, “…Surveillance Capitalism…”

    “The word “search” has meant a daring existential journey,
    not a ‘finger tap’ to already existing answers; that a “friend”
    is an embodied mystery that can be forged only face-to-face
    and heart-to-heart; and that recognition is the glimmer of
    homecoming we experience in our beloved’s facial recognition.
    It is not ok to have our best instincts for connection, empathy,
    and information exploited by draconian ‘quid pro quo’ that
    holds these goods hostage to the pervasive strip search of
    our lives.
     [My insertion to make clear.]
    It is not ok to have every move, utterance, emotion, and
    desire to be catalogued, manipulated and then used
    surreptitiously to herd us through the future tense for the
    sake of someone else’s profits.”
  3. site admin Says:

    Recent editorial on congressional action cited in:

  4. site admin Says:

    Opinion | America, Your Privacy Settings Are All Wrong - The New York Times (
    Opinion America, Your Privacy Settings Are All Wrong Using an opt-in
    approach will help curb the excesses of Big Tech.

    Every minute a person spends online helps

    countless companies build a thicker dossier

    about that person. 
     Despite what corporations

    profess, much of this personal data is used not

    to improve products themselves, but to make

    those products more attractive to advertisers.

     One straightforward solution is to let people

    opt in to data collection on apps and websites.

    Today, with few exceptions, loads of personal

    data are collected automatically by default

    unless consumers take action to opt out of the

    practice — which, in most cases, requires

    dropping the service entirely.

    federal legislation is so urgently needed. That

    should include provisions making personal data

    collection available only with consumers’ prior

    consent. (Some data is needed to ensure

    products are working properly.) “…
  5. site admin Says:

    Leading commentary on Internet use forming the “surveillance”
    business model is:
    Scott Gallaway, “POST CORONA: FROM CRISIS TO
    OPPORTUNITY” Portfolio/Penguin 2020, P. 33-35
    [Worth reading if this is important to you.]

     ’There are two fundamental business models.
    1. A company can sell stuff for more than the cost of making it.
     APPLE, takes ~$400 of components and with promises of status
    and sex appeal through brilliant advertising, charges $1200 for
    an iPhone.
    2. A company can give stuff away or sell it below cost and charge
    other companies for access to its product: the consumer’s
    behavioral data.
     NBC has Seinfeld produce a show and film episodes and beam
    it free with several minutes of ads for which it charges
    advertisers. The product is YOU.

    In the tech based economy model 2 is more lucrative and
    invasive. In the old days pre-pandemic, we gave up some of
    our time and attention to get the free stuff that advertising
    paid for. When relationships are online, the companies has
    all of this data about us—what we read, where we shop,
    who we talk to, what we eat, where we live. Using the data
    to make even more money. We are trading our privacy for

    Note the division of industries. Android versus iOS. Android
    offers a decent product for low or no upfront cost, but vacuums
    up your data and privacy. Collecting 1200 data points a day
    from users and send them to the Google data-mining mother

     iOS phones pull 200 , saying it protects privacy. Google
    tracks your views, associates it with everything else it knows
    about your and uses it all to sell you and your cohorts ads.

    Netflix operates on the Red.iOS model. You pay and you
    get content. You are the customer.

    This divide will deepen Red and Blue Social Media.
    Red: tiktok, Facebook (free, but no privacy)
    Blue Twitter (subscription fee, some privacy Twitter has replaced
    PR, news agencies and IR firms ‘
  6. site admin Says:

    Sara Morrison wrote an informative piece in Recode
    dark patterns include:

     The trial streaming service you signed up for, only to be
    automatically charged when the trial expired

    The app interstitial ad you can’t figure out how to get
    out of because the “X” on the top right-hand corner is
    too small and faint to see … …
    or the “X” is so small that you accidentally click on the
    ad itself and are redirected to the ad’s website

    The drugstore account you have to create to get a
    vaccine appointment but can’t easily cancel

    The marketing email that commands you to respond
    within the next five minutes or else, and includes a
    fake countdown timer

    The big pop-up window urging you to sign up for a
    website’s newsletter with a big red “Sign Me Up”
    button, while the opt-out button is much smaller and
    passive-aggressively implies that anyone who clicks is
    a bad person who doesn’t care about saving money or
    staying informed

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