This week in data – July 6

Data isn’t a dirty word!

So don’t wash your mouth out just yet. That’s the message from digital transformation minister Michael Keenan, who according to the AFR says data is the best way to improve national productivity. Don’t get distracted by the bad news, he says.


“Incidents like the recent Cambridge Analytica scandal spring to mind and help explain why data, at least in the eyes of the general public, is perceived as something bad or something to be feared.”

“But is that negative reputation really deserved? The answer, quite simply, is of course not.”

Government releases issues paper on data sharing laws

Michael Keenan’s comments above make sense given this reveal – the Government has just released an issues paper about new data sharing laws. The law is designed to help develop a framework around public sector data, and bring government data into the modern age.
They want comments by August 1, so go nuts. 


“The Bill will aim to increase authorised sharing and release of the range of data held by the Australian Government while improving data safeguards and risk management tools to create a more transparent environment for data sharing.”

GDPR spreads to California

Well, not literally. But California – which has the world’s fifth largest economy –  has just passed a massive privacy law that will have significant impact on the tech industry. Silicon Valley will start lobbying against it, but given the controversy surrounding Facebook and, well, the rest of the industry…it seems like the privacy ship has sailed.


“Most significantly, [the law] includes an exception to the right to equal service, allowing companies to offer different levels of service depending on how customers interact with a site, app, or advertisement – the so-called ‘Spotify exception’.

The outdoor transformation we’ve been waiting for

APN Outdoor has finally launched its analytics platform to measure the effectiveness of outdoor media. Helped along by PwC and Data Republic – yours truly – this is a big push in the right direction to understand what consumers are actually doing. Not just what we think they’re doing. The result is smarter and more accurate ad targeting. Better for everyone.


“Dn’A is built around 34 billion data points – including 4.2 billion transactions – 300 merchant categories, 56 audience segments, 2,500 postcodes, 58,000 geographic areas and 15,000 Census variables.” 

Facebook reveals even MORE sharing agreements

Seriously? Again? Get it together, Facebook. Now the company says it had even more sharing agreements with dozens of companies including Amazon. The revelation was made as part of a submission to Congress, which isn’t going to do much to calm users’ fears.


“Facebook said that these “partnerships” differ dramatically from the data sharing endeavors of the third-party app developer platform which was at the center of the Cambridge Analytica scandal earlier this year.”

Perth start-up speared for inappropriate data sharing

Eek. Not good. HealthEngine was found to have allegedly shared customers’ data with law firms. The app says this was all above board, but…the office of the Australian Information Commissioner has launched an investigation anyway.


“The company has said that this was only done with the user’s “express consent”, but ABC News reported that it was only included in a separate “collection statement” that a user has to accept in order to use the service.”

That’s our wrap for this week. Thanks for reading – we hope you found it entertaining and informational. We’d love to hear your thoughts on these articles and anything else data related! Email us anytime at!

Until next week,

Team Data Republic

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