Thinking slow

about data management ⦿


Binckhorst Institute approaches the central data management challenges of our times – disinformation, digital identities, outsourcing of human responsibility to algorithms and artificial intelligence – without prejudice. 

Binckhorst's only premise is ‘thinking slow’: logically reflecting on data management issues with concentration while taking prior knowledge into account. Binckhorst is a place where independent minds are not afraid to reinvent their thinking nor themselves – over and over. Let them think slow for you too.


What if we’d approach disinformation without focusing on the intent of those creating or spreading it? What if we’d take an alternative approach?

Implementing this alternative approach would save us the effort of having to fact-check every piece of information that looks fabricated - especially since "as much as 90% of online content may be synthetically generated by 2026". Instead, what would need to be checked is the provenance presented by the sender to clear information from the appearance of fabrication. Priority is given to information that could cause serious negative effects within a predefined context.

An educational side effect of the method-checking needed is an expected increase in science literacy on the side of the receivers as the focus of attention would shift from the level of facts to the level of methodology (from ‘topic rebuttal’ to ‘technique rebuttal’).

Reversing the burden of proof presupposes a maximum stance on free speech. No legislation is to criminalize disinformation as such. Dinsinformation should only be prosecuted when violating existing laws.

Disinformation interventions

Drog has created a classification of disinformation interventions: the Drog Intervention Model (DIM). Within Binckhorst we experiment with interactionist interventions (Gen 5 in the model). These interventions link to the alternative approach to understanding disinformation that is being probed. Since the burden of proof of whether information is fabricated is reversed and delegated to the senders, all information that looks fabricated is to be considered false until proven otherwise. This means that media education needs to teach those consuming information that no information can be trusted until it is cleared. In an age of deepfakes this seems a reasonable approach.

One of the Gen 5 interventions Binckhorst is testing concerns how to set the scene for interactionist interventions to increase receiver vigilance: program (adT). This is no trivial task as disinformation is a divisive topic that is likely to touch upon receiver identities, especially in our current times in which affective polarization is increasing. Program (adT) focuses on adolescents in classrooms. It employs interactionist didactics to make all students feel seen, heard, and safe .

Digital identities

Personal data management is an example of a digital identy field Binckhorst is working on. 

- What would the concept of 'users in full control of their data' entail?