EDPB decision sparks ‘consent or pay’ debate for Big Tech firms

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A decision Wednesday by Europe’s primary data regulator could have Big Tech firms rethinking their plans to charge users for not selling their personal data for behavioral advertising.

The European Data Protection Board (EDPB) questioned if paying a fee to ensure data is not used to pitch advertising to users qualified as “consent” under the “pay-or-consent” models popularized by major online platforms.

The EDPB issued its opinion following a request by the Dutch, Norwegian, and Hamburg data protection authorities (DPAs) to clarify whether the models—as touted by Meta—were valid under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) as citizens would effectively be paying for privacy when it should already be guaranteed.

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