chapter  Chapter 11
15 Pages

Blockchain and data market

The case of Wibson from a critical perspective
WithGuillermina Yansen

This chapter characterizes an extended way of using blockchain technology in the field of circulation and commercialization of user-generated data through the case of Wibson. Launched in 2017, Wibson is a blockchain based app that aims to decentralize the data market by "empowering individuals to profit from their data". This case is relevant for two reasons. First, it represents a clear example of one of the current and most extended ways of blockchain usage in the context of informational capitalism. Second, it operates within one of the most profitable branches of the information sector, potentially challenging giant companies like Facebook and Google. This branch has been subject to all kinds of debates about privacy boundaries, abuses and lack of transparency by corporations. Guillermina advances in the study of Wibson, pointing out some criticisms, underlining how this is a witness case to observe the way in which the potentials of blockchain technology are being subsumed to the logic of the commercialization of the Internet and, thus, leaving aside the discussions about the meaning of the public.