So who actually owns the data? Know your rights as a user. Your data is an extension of YOU!

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I've Been Here Awhile
Posts: 4

So who actually owns the data? Know your rights as a user. Your data is an extension of YOU!

user data that has been exploited should be compensated with money


 I see no reason why Google,Microsoft, Verizon / OATH, Facebook, etc..... shouldn’t pay me to use their networks. My data is their currency.  


In the EU data is an extension of the person. It’s not like a product, but an actual part of that person. So people in the EU own their data.

But here in the US/Canada we have very much moved to a model where data belongs to the company. 


Time to tax the data pirates who are exploiting users for trillions of dollars. 



If you use the Internet, everything you do is being tracked and sold, and you’re not making a penny from it.  To be blunt: we should make Google, Microsoft, Facebook and other such AI companies pay for it with a simple data tax.


A universal basic income (UBI), wherein government provides a monthly stipend so citizens can afford a home and basic necessities, is something experts believe would directly address the issue of unemployment and poverty, and possibly even eliminate hundreds of other welfare programs. It may also be the only real solution to the impending automation bonanza.

Humans generate more data on Facebook in a single day than exists in all the books ever written combined. That’s not even counting Google Search trends, Amazon and Alibaba’s shopping insights, and Microsoft’s gleanings from having Windows installed on a gazillion devices. Data, unlike gold and oil, is a nearly unlimited resource.

So why aren’t we getting paid for creating it?


In return for this data — which provides the primary source of income for social networks like Facebook — we’ve developed new addictions, watched national elections fall under the influence of foreign entities, and unwittingly participated in the training of autonomous technology that’ll likely disrupt the vast majority of industries humans currently work in. But we haven’t gotten paid.

Facebook, on the other hand, has: it’s worth nearly half a trillion dollars.

Does this mean we’re all a bunch of cows giving the milk away for free? If our personal information is worth so much how come all we’re getting in return for it is status updates and a never ending stream of advertisements?


 It could be argued that levying a data tax on major technology companies could pay for a universal basic income. Whether or not you believe that’s a good idea doesn’t change the fact it’s further indication our data is valuable.


Now that we’ve given away so much milk for free how do we start charging for it? It’s probably unrealistic to expect Facebook to put us all on the payroll tomorrow. And there’s a pretty good chance your “share” of the data pool wouldn’t amount to much. We’d have to get each of the big data companies to cut us checks before we could all quit our day jobs.


And it’s going to be difficult to put a price on our data (though, it turns out TNW did just that and the price was $480). Plus it’ll be even harder to track and enforce the proper licensing of data. If the government taxes big tech we have to trust that our government is looking out for citizens instead of corporations. 


Ultimately, the only way we can decide who owns our data is by becoming picky with how we share it and demanding more transparency from the companies we allow to use it.

I'm a Senior Advisor
Posts: 2,153

Re: So who actually owns the data? Know your rights as a user. Your data is an extension of YOU!

Very well put and thanks for writing this - this is an important discussion for all to become educated on and to be aware of how our choices may also be impacting others without their knowledge or consent.


Yes, in this time of relative peace, we have all become a bit complacent on that application of terms and have we truly read and understand (fully) the whole terms.  They may suggest that the Oath policies are more transparent, in the same way that CRTC required more transparency in contractual terms under the wireless code, but even though there is better transparency, things are still found buried in the fine print at times, (such as on the web sites on products, or within long linked documents, or multiple documents.


We will all need to be more deligent in the review of these policies, and I will extend this to Rogers refusal to send quotations with full terms applicable to the services we obtain over the phone until we agree, so like the Oath agreement, on some of our browsers, and at times, we are prevented from getting into the full Yahoo site until we click yes - that is probably a glitch - I think I noticed in the EU policies that you have to be given an adequate opportunity to be able to fully understand the policy before you accept it, so guess that is the reason for the do it later, and the delay in when they will prevent further use of the service.


I do wonder though, during the period where we use it and have not agreed, does that preclude any use of our information, since we did not consent during that period?


And what about the historical data?


Lots of things need to happen before we see full transparency, and ease of understanding and choice of individual components of a service - at the moment, a lot of it, except our preferences of ads is pretty much all or nothing.


Keep the disccusion going.  And we will see over time, just how strong a public position Rogers will take on this - in particular after May 25, 2018 when the EU rules become mandatory - the reason I believe why these changes were all put forward by all companies.


I've Been Here Awhile
Posts: 2

Re: So who actually owns the data? Know your rights as a user. Your data is an extension of YOU!

I also really want to know where all my data is going once they steal it away for me at the end of the month roughly 8 gigs every month which over the last two years is a lot I want my data where is my data going why can I have my data I’ve paid for it you took the money I took the data and then you took the data back what’s going on you thieves