Talking Data: Protecting online data privacy was the big 2014 trend

In this edition of Talking Data, Tech Target editors Ed Burns and Jack Vaughan take a look back at their favorite tweets from 2014 to examine some of the hottest topics from the world of data management and analytics.

During 2014, people woke up to the idea of data privacy. The main catalyst was the publication of the Edward Snowden leaks, which showed that the government monitors some communications of everyday citizens.

Awareness of data privacy quickly spread, and people started thinking more about how Internet companies use their data. Facebook and Ok Cupid became targets of criticism for their data science experiments. Facebook stirred controversy after it published results from a research project that involved manipulating users’ news feeds and studying their emotional impact to certain status updates. Ok Cupid found itself in hot water after running an experiment that involved matching up users with people who were likely poor matches. Uber is the latest target of criticism over its handling of potentially sensitive user data, reportedly making ride data for members of Congress available to job candidates who had yet to undergo background checks.

Other topics of discussion in this podcast include the emergence of “small data,” a counterpoint to the exuberance surrounding big data, and the recent Hortonworks initial public offering, a move that could signal real staying power for Hadoop technology.

Ed Burns is site editor of SearchBusinessAnalytics. Email him at and follow him on Twitter: @EdBurnsTT.

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