While American patriotism -- the love of one's country -- is "awesome" in more ways than one, American nationalism -- the belief that America is the "greatest nation on earth," with the "greatest military power", and the "greatest ideals" -- can become dangerous.
Even at a festival dedicated to creativity, there was an emphasis on technology and data. So when someone wants to get back to the emotional connection between brands and consumers, it can feel like a refreshing bolt of "why, yes. Do tell."
Data represents a "societal nervous system," which provides information that we are either consciously or subconsciously aware of. The analysis of that data, who utilizes it, and for which purposes, determines its usefulness.