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Companies Must Contribute to a Digitally Sustainable Society by Ensuring Fair Use of Data Rather Than Focusing on Tick-the-Box Consent

Innopay

05 May 2022

Lokke Moerel spoke to Innopay about why recent proposals to compensate consumers for the use of their data, like proposals to grant individuals a ‘data dividend’, undermines digital sustainability.

“The thinking behind ‘sharing the wealth’ is that giving individuals control over their data (by introducing privacy consent requirements) will enable them to leverage this power to gain a better economic return on it,” Lokke said. “Although these attempts are commendable – after all, who can be against fair compensation? – the proposals are actually counterproductive. They will not address the excesses of the current data economy. The remedy here is worse than the ailment. To illustrate the underlying issue, let’s take the example of misleading advertising and unfair trade practices. If an advertisement is misleading or a trade practice unfair, it is intuitively understood that companies should not be able to remedy this situation simply by obtaining the consumer’s consent. In the same vein, if companies generate large revenues with unfair data processing practices, the solution is not to ensure consumers get their fair share of the illicitly obtained revenues. That would just sustain those practices!”

Read the full interview.

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