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Ontological Friction: ways in which libraries & archives limit access to personal data

Bawden, D. ORCID: 0000-0002-0478-6456, Pedley, P. and Robinson, L. (2017). Ontological Friction: ways in which libraries & archives limit access to personal data. IFLA Journal,

Abstract

Ontological (or informational) friction is the term used by Luciano Floridi to describe the amount of effort that would be required for some agent to obtain, filter or block information about other agents in a given environment, by decreasing, shaping or increasing the level of friction. The aim is to find the optimal level of friction in the infosphere. This article considers a range of ways in which ontological friction is used by libraries and archives in order to control the flow of personally identifiable information. Techniques include obscurity (including practical obscurity), obfuscation, use of blocking to inhibit tracking mechanisms, as well as temporal frictions such as limiting the length of time personal data is held. We base our analysis on Floridi's information ethics, and specifically on his conception of information privacy.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: Bawden, D., Pedley, P. & Robinson, L. (2017). Ontological Friction: ways in which libraries & archives limit access to personal data. To be published in IFLA Journal. Copyright © 2018 SAGE. Reprinted by permission of SAGE Publications.
Departments: School of Mathematics, Computer Science & Engineering > Library & Information Science
URI: http://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/19377
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