Starset Society

DNA ancestry tests may look cheap, but your data is the price

Our genomes are a treasure trove of biological data, and an industry has sprung up to sell products based on our newfound ability to quickly and cheaply read and interpret DNA.

The biggest of these companies is 23andMe: five million paying customers since 2006, usually nosing for clues about their ancestry. Unlike most genetic genealogy companies, 23andMe also offers health-related information, on traits such as eye colour, predisposition to a handful of diseases, and the tendency to puke when drinking alcohol.

As with Galton’s scheme, 23andMe was never interested in your personal history or your eyes. What it wants is to own and curate the biggest biological dataset in the world.

Read more at The Guardian

The Starset Society

2 comments

  • Being someone who does not know their biological background I found this to be a great tool for me.
    Maybe I’m naïve, but being able to find family and health reports like that has really helped me figure out who I am and my health possibilities in the future.

  • Information is power. We are worried about getting our identities stolen, this takes that to a whole other level potentially. However, the flip side may be a better understanding of human ancestral history and the evolution of our species.

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