The much-hyped concept of ‘big data’ has served as a banner under which a range of problematic assumptions about the social world and our knowledge of it have been advanced. This chapter explores the epistemological stance this involves and the social outcomes it leads to, leading to what I term the ‘evisceration of the human’: the reduction of human agency to its behavioural traces. If social science consolidates around such a reduction, it leaves us with a circumscribed understanding of ‘online order’, naturalising the horizons of privately owned platforms and obscuring the political economy logically and empirically prior to them. The status of the human is a productive framework through which to analyse the intellectual underpinning to the emerging political economy of digital economy, as well as a potential pole around which cultural resistance could consolidate.