Big Data : The Most Valuable Commodity
The Economist Magazine, published for the week of May 6-12, 2017 stated: "Big Data is a valuable resource and new commodity in the world".
By: Manerep Pasaribu (Dosen Pasca Sarjana UI dan Penulis buku "BIG DATA AND STRATEGIC ENTREPRENEURSHIP")
Jakarta, Nusantaratv.com - Facebook's 50 million customer data was leaked and sucked up by Cambridge Analytica. It is suspected that this data was misused for political activities in the US during the last election. The data can describe trends that occur in the community to develop strategies that will be used to defeat the competition. The example above makes us aware that data is the most valuable commodity at the moment. This data can be used for business and political purposes in determining strategies.
The Economist Magazine, published for the week of May 6-12, 2017 stated: "Big Data is a valuable resource and new commodity in the world". Data creates new ways of competition. A new way to do business. Creates a new business model. Encourages disruption in various businesses and paradigms. In the past, spices, metals, and gold were contested commodities.
Then oil, gas, and uranium became very valuable commodities. Previously, oil became the mark of a nation. Stephen Leeb (2004), in his book The Oil Factor: "Oil is essential to all we do". But, now data is becoming a new commodity that has begun to be contested. Big Data has become an extraordinary power of an organization or country because of its high economic value.
Why Are Data Worth and Contested?
The company has two types of resources, namely the first tangible resources (such as buildings, factories, offices, etc.). The second is intangible resources, such as knowledge, skills, brands, networking, and data (small data and big data). Big data is the foundation of megatrends/trends and knowledge as a force that must be understood by decision-makers such as businesspeople, politicians, corporations, and the State to produce the best decision in winning battles against the competition.
In the past, data struggles did exist. The data was in the form of reports, research, and technology results, or other very important data called small data. Currently, various types of data, ranging from text, maps, sounds, videos, photos, and habits on social media - called big data - are contested again. The big data supply comes from internet connections, both from computers and smartphones such as SMS, WhatsApp, email, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, online conversations, personal data from technology companies (Facebook, Google) and includes population data.
Data that was initially underestimated is now very valuable when users can extract the data. By using algorithms and with the help of experts, valuable information and knowledge can be obtained, such as megatrends, trends, and the behavior of the inhabitants of this world.
Artificial intelligence products, such as driverless cars, online taxi services, and consumer services, emerged from big data.
Cambridge Analytica received the personal data of 50 million Facebook users collected with an application developed by Aleksandr Kogan, a psychologist from Cambridge University.
The process involved downloading the data of around 270,000 people in order to collect data on 50 million Facebook users via the original group's social contacts. The personal data of Facebook users were allegedly utilized by Cambridge Analytica to support Trump in the 2016 presidential election with an abundance of information that directed them to support the current president by creating the right strategy.
Big Data is of high economic value
Initially, all of these developments did not cause problems. However, because the data gave economic value to the organization, hunting, theft, and data disputes began to appear.
When they succeed in taking and processing data, the data provide high economic value. This commodity is an item that can be bought and sold and now there is an effort to evaluate data that is very useful for the company.
Without realizing it, every day we have shared various personal information, ranging from social conversations, shopping habits, travel patterns, and financial transactions, through various Internet-based applications that we use.
The world only recently realized that large amounts of data has been collected by large technology companies, such as Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Microsoft. Some countries have begun to question the mastery of the data even though there has been no significant developments. Each country will look for reasons to get at least some economic benefits from the data taken by the big companies.
The economic value of the data will be even greater when privacy policies are increasingly relaxed. So far, the United States has allowed internet service providers to sell customer data. We can imagine if later privacy policies become looser, it could be possible for individuals or companies, who want our profile, to buy our profile in full, starting with general data on our habits through social media service providers.
Cambridge University and the Microsoft Research Lab once made a study of patterns of "Likes" on Facebook that can accurately predict personal characteristics to sensitive things.
Future Plans and Solutions
It's time for all people to start thinking about their perspective and the steps necessary to face the era of this new commodity. Entrepreneurs and organizations need to develop a business vision, the government needs to pay attention to the possibility of new problems, and universities need to prepare competent resources to face the data commodity era.
Not surprisingly, many large companies are now changing their business vision and mission. For example, a wide range of firms are developing data strategies, from industrial companies to digital companies, such as General Electric (GE), Hitachi, and Siemens. Now they record all business and company activities into very valuable data to maximize the benefits of the company's competitive advantages now and in the future.
The enormous data flow gives some companies unprecedented strength. A new commodity fosters a profitable and fast-growing industry that encourages regulators or the government to enter to control the direction of large data flow movements in a group of technology companies such as Facebook, Google, and Amazon, etc.
These large data flow movements are the oil of the digital era. Titan companies such as Alphabet (Google's parent company), Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Microsoft are unstoppable and increase the value of their shares. They are the five giant companies that have the highest share value in the world. Amazon earned half of all the dollars spent online in America. Google and Facebook contributed to almost all of the growth in digital advertising revenue in America last year.
The use of data gave the above technology companies enormous strength. Thinking in the old way of competition as created in the oil era looks outdated in what is called the "data economy". A new approach is needed for the "data economy" and it is urgent that it be implemented in a controlled and lawful manner.
Almost all decisions about population, health, business, politics, and government policies are based on big data. Big data, with it's speed, volume, variation, and truth play a very large and important role in all human and organizational activities. Companies that are still thinking of investing in big data technology must get ready before it's too late to stay competitive.
It can be concluded that big data is the foundation of all megatrends and trends that will happen today, tomorrow, the day after tomorrow, and the future. Megatrends and trends are an opportunity for entrepreneurs, businesspeople, politicians, organizations, parties, companies and countries. ***