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UNITED STATES: Ex-CIA officer Bryan Wright proposes data mining royalties

Former CIA officer Bryan Dean Wright says that the “smart spies” all recognized that, within the lifetimes, many would be “out of a job, too old to re-train, or struggling in a ‘shared economy'” due to automation.

In an article in Congress Blog, the “forum for lawmakers and policy professionals” at The Hill, Wright describes the problem and proposes a solution: data mining royalties, or “money paid from Big Data companies like Facebook who mine and sell your personal data.”

Wright compares his idea to the Alaska Permanent Fund — which provides a small annual income to all Alaskans, funded from royalties paid by oil companies when they extract natural resources from Alaskan land.

In Wright’s words:

“The ‘Data Permanent Fund’ would work in a similar way: each year, all full-time U.S. citizens earning less than $250,000 would get a tax-free check. How to calculate the check’s amount should be subject of rigorous debate. For instance, it could be based on a percentage of the amount charged by Google (or Facebook, or Apple) to advertisers when they sell your data. But the bottom line is still the same: You get paid when you get mined.”

Bryan Dean Wright (February 10, 2016), “Surviving the robot revolution,” The Hill: Congress Blog.

Image Credit: Arbeck, Wikimedia Commons

About Kate McFarland

Kate McFarland has written 511 articles.

Former lead writer and editor of Basic Income News.

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The views expressed in this Op-Ed piece are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the view of Basic Income News or BIEN. BIEN and Basic Income News do not endorse any particular policy, but Basic Income News welcomes discussion from all points of view in its Op-Ed section.

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