A writer at the Brown Daily Herald has alerted the Columbia College Student Council that, for a year between 2003-2004, CUIT sold our emails to Columbia
panopticists, er, sociologists, Gueorgi Kossinets and Duncan Watts for this Science article. The study, which discusses the formation and evolution of social networks, did not name the “large university” whose electronic communications were analyzed. Two weeks later, tech gazette eWEEK.com decided to state the obvious in a January 20th post. ‘Twas us who was snooped!
In the name of science, Columbia University behavioral scientists recently dissected every e-mail sent by every Columbia student for a year.
During the year it took to procure the e-mail and the ensuing months of research on the 14 million or so missives, the 43,000 correspondents never knew they were the subjects of such a grand experiment.
The Bwog supports the “advancement of science” and understands that gains in knowledge often require sacrifices. But we would like to remind the Columbia Institutional Review Board that next time they enlist us in one of their little “experiments,” we’d like our $10, thank you very much.
After all, uncompensated exploitation was precisely why the Bwog dropped her psychology major.