UPDATE - Gigabit Goof-Ups; Data Errors Increasinggreenspun.com : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread
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THE RISE OF GIGABIT GOOF-UPS
DATA ERRORS ARE INCREASING AS BUSINESS FUNCTIONS BECOME MORE AUTOMATED. MANY EXPERTS SAY IT'S TIME TO DEVELOP STANDARDS FOR INFORMATION INTEGRITY.
TIMELESS ADVICE: USE COMMON SENSE By Michele Fitzpatrick Tribune Staff Writer
July 10, 2000 As the human toll from data error rises, the people hurt by them--maybe because they believed erroneous health claims, or had their credit history destroyed by an on-line accounting error or missed a vital communication waylaid in a malfunction in the e-mail system--may take actions that will lead to more accurate, consistent and reliable information.
Laura Hartman, associate professor of ethics and assistant vice president of academic affairs at DePaul University, said she believes it's high time people applied the same common sense in their Internet interactions as they do in the off-line world. "One of my frustrations is that people are so in awe of technology they seem to have forgotten that bad is bad and good is good," she said.
"Look at the history of newspapers," Hartman said. "How did we come to believe them? How do we acquire any kind of standard for any type of data acquisition? And why are we so befuddled by the information revolution when we simply need to remind ourselves not everything we read is true?"
Users also may need to scale their expectations downward to match on-line reality, according to a consultant who deals with user expectations firsthand. "On-line customer expectations are extremely high," said Russ Gates, global director of technology risk consulting at Arthur Andersen. "I have a concern that company performance can't exactly live up to people's expectation for accurate information, performance and service."
But Hartman and Gates said standards eventually will emerge through the trust-building experience under way between users and tech-enabled companies.
On the consumer side, Hartman said, "It's the early, renegade era of the Internet, and you might get hurt by believing too much. But, in the end, if people get hurt too much, they will stop using erroneous sources of information. Then the source must rebuild trust or lose."
On the corporate side, Gates said corporate commitment to accountability will develop standards to provide accurate, consistent and reliable data. "It is good business," he said. "Companies ought to hold themselves accountable."
-- (Dee360Degree@aol.com), July 10, 2000