Who Owns Your Data?
Alice Bonasio

Spot on Alice!!! I wanted to leave you dozens of claps to equate a standing ovation, but it looks like Medium limits it to a maximum of 50.

Your brilliant article about the importance of our privacy and the immense value of our personal data is yet another wake up call to all those who would like to continue benefiting from “free” online services without paying anything at all, not even the equivalent price of a single healthy fruit… per year!

There is always a cost to using a “free” app or service, and I strongly believe that the benefits a user might derive from it are completely dwarfed by the exponential revenues derived by the service provider itself, as follows:

  • The original high value of the user’s personal data which is very often kept associated to his/her full name, incrementally increased with every tiniest new interaction provided by the user
  • The number of times the service sells this data many times over to whichever 3rd party offering to purchase it, at an ever increasing price.

Once the user understands who much he is “loosing” by allowing his personal data to be traded like diamonds, he can finally accept to make a choice between the following options:

  1. If he/she is keen on privacy: Pay a minimal monthly or yearly fee to continue enjoying this service, worry-free.
  2. If he/she is doesn’t care about his privacy, as is still the case for the majority of online users: Get paid! Simply put: Ask the service provider to credit his/her account in proportion to how much revenue is derived from the sale of his own data.

Since Option 2 is still utopian and far fetched, at least for now, then Option 1 is really the only choice we should all accept!

But let’s assume we reach this utopian world one day, which option will you choose?

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