Earlier this fall, the Atlantic published a piece forecasting a data-driven culture where consumers are assigned a single score. In the future, members of society are judged against this number. Who you date or conduct business with will be determined by this score. Yet, this may not be in the future. As noted in the World Privacy Forum report “The Scoring of America,” thousands of scores already exist. These range from measurements of one’s reliability as an employee to one’s “medication adherence” as a patient, and of course, the ubiquitous credit score. Reebok recently started a campaign called the 'Human Score'. It is a single test designed to quantify your human-ness. Apparently, I'm only 81% human. This number is based on fitness, grit, intellectual curiosity, and sociability. I rate lowest on grit and highest on fitness. But what does that mean since I consider my fitness currently at 'marshmallow?'
As we develop Vijilent, we too question is it possible to identify someone by a single score. What should such a number mean? Currently, the V-score we provide is based on three general concepts: (1) identifiability through social media (2) pleasantness in presentation and (3) positivity in presentation. We like to call these 'verifiability', 'virtue' and 'valence' - only because it sounds more poetic and aligns with the 'v' theme. Currently, we are questioning the need for a single number. Is it best to identify someone through a single score? We are exploring this question and many more as we continue to work on #trustandsafety for the sharing economy.
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