The Costs of Convenient Connections

Kristen Walker
Key Takeaways
​What? Recent news about how social media giants use consuemrs' information has highlighted just how much data consumers unwittingly share on social media

So What? Recent research sheds light on the dilemma consumers consistently find themselves in: the time and attention it takes to understand how their data is used outweighs the immediate gratification of social interaction 

Now What? The author recommends that consumers actively learn the difference between shared and surrendered data 

Journal of Public Policy & Marketing author Kristen Walker's Spring 2016 research​ presaged the drama unfolding in today's socially connected world, as social media giants such as Facebook have come under fire in how they have allowed their data to be used to manipulate consumers without their knowledge. The author uses a matrix to illustrate the difference between shared data and surrendered data, and she points out that attention is the commodity of choice in today's marketplace. She advocates verification mechanisms and increased educational efforts aimed at enhancing consumers’ attention to exactly what they are surrendering and to whom. This quick video breaks it down.


Kristen Walker
Kristen L. Walker is Associate Professor of Marketing, Department of Marketing, Nazarian College of Business and Economics, California State University Northridge (e-mail: