11 Jan 2013

New EU Data Protection Law Implies that Facebook Charges its Users

Popular services such as Facebook and Gmail among others, will be facing a huge challenge in terms of their business strategies on their users free membership current status, if the new EU data protection law is implemented. This is the view of some legal experts. The new law, enforces new restrictions on how companies process, store and manage personal data, the draft legislation can be seen on European Data Protection Regulation.

The new proposed law presents many difficulties for third party web services to present terms and conditions that force users to pass their consent and ownership automatically to the third party service to take advantage of a users data on their data processing mechanisms.

Eduardo Ustaran, at Field Fisher Waterhouse stated: services which use information gleaned from user data to generate ad revenue, would have to abandon their ad-supported models if the proposals became law unchanged. If they weren't able to use your data in the way that is profitable or useful for them for advertising purposes, then either the user has to pay for it or stop using the service.

Erika Mann, at Facebook, also stated: "We are concerned that some aspects of the report do not support a flourishing European digital single market and the reality of innovation on the internet - which is inescapably global in nature, and which includes important partners like the US. We will be examining these proposals closely in the coming weeks".

The time-scale for the implementation of the new law is that it should come into effect this year, then it will follow a period of around two years where European member states will implement at a local level.

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