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Importance of Data Literacy of the young...


  Data literacy, according to academic researchers, is defined as the ability to read, write, and explain data in context, which encompasses a comprehension of data sources and constructs, as well as the ability to express the use case, application, and consequent value. In this modern era we are not only ordinary people but also digital citizens.

 Simply described, datafication is the process of converting digital interactions into a record that can be collected, analyzed, and sold (Mayer-Schoenberger and Cukier 2013). One of the main goals of datafication is to enable digital systems to create an experience that keeps users engaged with the platform for extended periods of time. Datafication, according to Zuboff (2019), is a major tool in executing "instrumentarian power" — a new form of authority that "knows and directs human behavior toward the objectives of others" (8). At the same time, it is critical to recognize big data's positive social utility, with analytics benefiting a variety of societal areas such as medicine, education, and science. Data has become an important aspect of modern healthcare, allowing for more accurate health profiles and prediction models to be utilized in disease diagnosis and treatment (Schadt 2015). Data has become a vital component of learning when used efficiently and responsibly. Learning analytics, for example, can be utilized to provide thorough feedback on student performance as well as fresh and exciting insights into the educational process (Gaevi, Dawson, and Siemens 2015).

The aim of this research is to learn what type of information young internet users present to big data and to show where and how this data is used. Everything gets stored on the internet. Searching something on the internet or even spending more time on 1 single article than the others, gives data to "big data". (Büyükaslan and Kırık,2017)

  "Data is the new oil," British mathematician and Tesco marketing guru Clive Humby exclaimed from the rooftops in 2006. Big digital companies like Facebook and Google vacuumed up untold amounts of data over the following 15 years in order to captivate us with as much unfiltered information as possible. Of course, the fact that so much information can be collected over the internet creates a contradiction in itself. As a matter of fact, this issue contains fundamental problems in terms of morality. That's the reason why Facebook founder Mark Zuckerburg was sued. Among the scandals that broke out during his court case, there was also a sale of data for political matters. So why is data so important? Especially the young generation, born into technological development, contributes incredible amounts of data. Whether we want it or not, any action that can be recorded, causes us to generate data. (Arizona State University, Study Hall, 2020,10th September).

To describe what data literacy is, we must first define what it is not: data literacy is not the same as data science. Although not everyone needs to be a data scientist, everyone should be data literate. Data scientists have a high level of technological expertise. Data science is defined as the application of the scientific method to data in its purest form. (Morrow, J.,2021). When we watch an ordinary video among millions of other videos, we are giving data to Youtube (Arizona State University, Study Hall, 2020, 10th September).

Media literacy, according to Tibor Koltay (2011), is the ability to access media as well as critically evaluate, develop, and negotiate meanings in a culture of images, words, and sounds.

 Statista company's research department predicted that an estimated 3.6 billion people will be users of cloud storage programs in 2018. (Statista, 2016, 28th October). Currently, there are different cloud technologies for both IOS-based systems and systems such as Microsoft and Android. Besides the data we collect on our phones, are we aware of what data we upload to the internet? What would happen if the passwords of our Gmail accounts were stolen en masse due to a technical glitch that might occur suddenly? This is where the problems that storage systems can bring arise. The photos of many famous individuals were stolen from the cloud storage system and became the agenda on social media. This indicates that gaps can be found in this system.

The likely outcomes are the discovery of measuring the awareness level of data literacy among the young population born after 2000. This measure will be presented with statistical visuals to be released after the forms to be filled within the scope of the research.

 -The political use of data from the internet by countries and regions.

-Factors such as the use of selective perception and manipulation tools by governments and the creation of false ideas in the public by distorting the data will also be investigated.

  -Although a lot of research has been done in this area so far, the subject is of great importance in itself, since there is not enough research that scans the importance of data literacy among young people and carries out this through the political atmosphere.

-One of the main purpose of this research is to raise awareness in the younger generation to better preserve their data, which they think they have "given" voluntarily, through manipulation. As well as making them aware of the importance of data literacy and how their data is used when making their own choices on a political scale.
In fact, Christian Fuchs showed in his article that Karl Marx predicted long ago the importance of data and the data analysis that the internet would bring.
He conceptualized the Internet in the Grundrisse, stating that institutions "develop whereby each man might get knowledge about the activities of all others and strive to alter his own correspondingly through the mails, telegraphs, and other means." 161 (Marx, 1857/1858/1973). According to Fuchs, the Internet is envisioned as a worldwide system of information, communication, and social networking in this formulation. (Fuchs, C. 2019, Pp. 53–71.)

Anastasia Kavada wrote about the importance of this issue in her published article.The collection of data and its use in political campaigns are also becoming intense. In this regard, researches are carried out in different contexts. (Kavada, A. 2019. Pp.199–204.)

Big Data is collected, stored, controlled, and analyzed in the context of political-economic goals aimed at individual economic and political control and targeting. In 1956, C. Wright Mills claimed that economic, military and political structures are becoming increasingly intertwined (Mills 1956, 8).

The world has a material basis for profiles, activity, and interactivity. Whilst visibility can be characterized as a consequence of profile, activity, and engagement, it is nevertheless a very tangible metric related to the publics we live and envision. (McCosker, 2016)



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  6. Arizona State University, Study Hall, 2020, 10th September
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  11. Statista research department, 2016, 28th October
  12. Marx, 1857/1858/1973
  13. Fuchs, C. 2019. Karl Marx in the Age of Big Data Capitalism. In: Chandler, D. and Fuchs, C. (eds.) Digital Objects, Digital Subjects: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Capitalism, Labour and Politics in the Age of Big Data. Pp. 53–71. London: University of Westminster Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.16997/book29.d. License: CCBY NCND 4.0
  14. Kavada, A. 2019. The Movement Party – Winning Elections and Transforming Democracy in a Digital Era: Reflections on Paolo Gerbaudo’s Chapter. In: Chandler, D. and Fuchs, C. (eds.) Digital Objects, Digital Subjects: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Capitalism, Labour and Politics in the Age of Big Data. Pp. 199–204. London: University of Westminster Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.16997/book29.q. License: CCBYNCND 4.0
  15. Mills 1956, 8
  16. Data Literacy & Social Media Ecologies; Professor Anthony McCosker, https://amccosker.medium.com/data-literacy-social-media-ecologies-623ff8d73332


Pasha Bayramov