Understanding Digital Trash

In this podcast Berkman fellows Jack Cushman, Judith Donath, and Viktor Mayer-Schönberger discuss digital trash and its relation to data storage, privacy, remembering, and forgetting.


On your computer, you don’t ever really "take out the trash." Data doesn’t get picked up by a garbage truck. It doesn’t decompose in a landfill.

It just accumulates.

And because space is becoming less and less of an issue -- hard drive space keeps getting cheaper, and a lot of the apps we use have cloud storage anyway -- deleting our files is a thing of the past.

We become Digital Hoarders.

But what happens when we dig up those old files from years ago? Those old emails from our boyfriend or girlfriend, those old digital photos of family, those long rambling journal entries?

On this week's podcast we talk to three researchers who all have different stories of digital hoarding, deleting, and recovering.


Reference Section

A portion of this episode appeared on WGBH's Innovation Hub
How are people using social media to remember and forget?
On the Snapchat Boom and the rise of anonymous messaging


Individual vs. Group 
Release Date 
November, 2015