verb – the gathering of information about a user. This can include what a user writes or deletes; who a user interacts with and how they interact; what type of images they post; what they like or react to; what they read, watch and comment on; or any kind of user action on the platform that can be tracked such as scrolling habits.

Data mining is the process by which platforms gather the information they use for many purposes such as learning how to better market to users and keep user attention. Data collected from data mining also informs the algorithm and gives platform creators insights into how to control user experience in a way that achieves their desired outcomes.

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