Should Big Tech Take Your Personal Information Without Payment?
Researchers at NYU Stern School of Business and University College London find that acquiring private information by default without compensation by digital platforms (such as Google and Facebook) creates a market failure and can be grounds for antitrust enforcement.
Key takeaways include:
- To avoid the market failure, laws must ensure that collecting personal data is “opt-out” by default, creating a market for the sale of users’ information to digital platforms.
- Solely switching to a default “opt-out” will not automatically restore competition due to the existing market and bargaining power of these Big Tech companies. Dominant platforms could reduce the compensation a user would receive for personal information compared to a more competitive landscape, and platforms can disadvantage users given they are better informed in this market to begin with.
- The market failure must also be remedied by antitrust enforcement in tandem with other regulatory tools to establish a transparent and functional market.