California’s governor believes its residents should be compensated for their personal data, which has enriched Facebook, Google and other companies that call the state home.
“California’s consumers should also be able to share in the wealth that is created from their data,” Gavin Newsom said in his first state of the state address this week.
The governor said he has directed his staff to draft a proposal for a “data dividend,” which has been championed by academics, advocacy groups and people such as Chris Hughes, co-founder of Facebook. In an op-ed in the Guardian last year, Hughes compared the value of data to the value of labor. He also cited Alaska’s Permanent Fund Dividend, which distributes an equal portion of a tax on oil companies among all the state’s residents, as a possible model for a data dividend.
Details for a data dividend for Californians are scarce, including which companies would be taxed and what data would be included. The governor’s team is working with legislators and national experts on the issue, said Jesse Melgar, a spokesman for Newsom’s office, Friday.
One group that’s working with Newsom’s office is Common Sense, which advocates for children and families on media and technology issues and helped pass California’s first-in-the-nation digital privacy law last year.
Common Sense CEO James Steyer said Friday that the San Francisco-based nonprofit is talking with Newsom’s office, legislators, tech experts and economists as it prepares to back the introduction of legislation for a data dividend.
“It’s not a minor concept,” Steyer said, adding that it could have national and global implications and that he was “heartened” that the governor is taking it on.
While he couldn’t yet share specifics of the legislation that he said will be introduced in the next week or two — or the lawmakers involved — Steyer said …read more
Source:: The Mercury News – Business