Sunday, September 14, 2008

Paying Consumers for Data Sharing

I'm back in action after my week with the fam in Nags Head. Surprisingly, I was able to keep my distance from Blogger while on vacation.

As I was digging through my inbox today, I noticed this tidbit from my Grandpa -- who is always good about forwarding jokes, relevant political news, and money-making opportunities (sans the Bill Gates wants to pay you $500 thread -- even he knew that wasn't real.)

Apparently, Trans Union has been hit with a Class Action Lawsuit for selling "lists containing personal and financial consumer information to third parties for marketing purposes."

As readers of this blog know, I'm all for cutting out the middleman and putting cash in consumers' pockets in exchange for sharing their personal information -- although I think that data should be non-personally identifiable -- but a lawsuit settlement is not the way it should go down.

Bottom line, people should be able to monetize their own data without having to sue the companies that are (mis)using it.

Last week, I was tipped off to a company that's developing a product that might enable this. More on them tomorrow.

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