Nora A. Draper – The Identity Trade: Selling Privacy and Reputation Online

If you’re not paying for an (online) product, you’re the product. Every day we make choices that influence our online visibility, reputation, and identity.¬†The Identity Trade examines the relationship between online visibility and privacy, and the politics of identity and self-presentation in the digital age. Author Nora A. Draper interviewed entrepreneurs and industry representatives on their products and services, the way existing (online) identities can be strengthened or destroyed.

Draper investigated the ever-moving world of reputation influencers, anonymizers, search engine optimization (SEO), and the impact of algorithms. Some businesses failed, some morphed into other ventures, few survived the span of two decades that’s covered in this book. Can ethics and business live alongside? Who owns my data? Who buys and sells it? Do we really care about privacy? A series of niche players are showcased in depth, where I would expect more well-known brands and consumer-oriented tech companies.

About the author

Nora A. Draper is Assistant Professor of Communication at the University of New Hampshire.

I received a free review copy of this book from the publisher NYU Press through Netgalley in exchange for my personal, unbiased opinion upon reading.