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ALTER ALGO: Are algorithms really our digital alter egos?

Organization

Internet Society - Québec (ISOC Québec)

Published

2021

Project Leader(s)

Destiny Tchéhouali

Summary

This research project explores the perceptions and assesses the trust that Canadians place in online movie, video and music streaming services with respect to the use of their data for personalized algorithmic recommendations on these platforms. Three thousand respondents participated in the survey. The research team explored user profiling techniques and how automated recommendation systems function, as well as the measures taken by streaming platforms operating in Canada to protect the privacy and identity of their users.

The research takes stock of the various types of data collected by these platforms and examines elements of their privacy policies and terms of service agreements related to algorithmic transparency and data sharing with third-party companies. Faced with concerns about algorithmic bias, the risks of behavioural manipulation, and obtaining meaningful consent from users, the researchers provide ten recommendations for policymakers to take urgent enforcement and legislative action to effectively regulate activities and better hold streaming platforms accountable for their duties and obligations to protect the privacy of Canadians.

A website created to share the results of the research includes videos to enhance public education and literacy on issues related to the privacy impacts of artificial intelligence and algorithmic recommendation technology.

Project deliverables are available in the following language(s)

French

OPC Funded Project

This project received funding support through the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada’s Contributions Program. The opinions expressed in the summary and report(s) are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada. Summaries have been provided by the project authors. Please note that the projects appear in their language of origin.

Contact Information

Destiny Tchehouali, Ph.D.
President
ISOC Québec (Internet Society - Québec)
Email address: dtchehouali@isoc.quebec

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