Technology firms should be forced to pay extra tax to compensate online users for the use of their personal data, in a move which would be far more effective than GDPR.
So says former Publicis Group boss Maurice Lévy, who claimed the “data tax” would “change everything” about consumers’ relationship with tech companies.
Speaking at an event organised by Euronews, he said: “Personal data should belong to each and every consumer. Every time that data is used I think the data agglomerator that is going to be making a profit should pay consumers in one way or another.
“[Consumers] have to be paid and receive part of the revenue – then you would reshuffle the cards, you would change everything,” he said.
However, the chairman of the Publicis Group supervisory board made no mention of the French marketing giant’s own $4.4bn (£3.4bn) acquisition of Epsilon, which would also push Publicis into the digital tax bracket.
Instead, Lévy went on to complain that European institutions had failed to create the necessary climate for digital start-ups to thrive. “The problem is not regulation, the problem start-ups are faced with is there’s no such thing as a European ecosystem.”
He said that in Silicon Valley, Boston and even in “a small country like Israel”, that universities, venture capitalists and other investment funds were coming forward to support entrepreneurs “who want to change the world and actually do change it”.
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