LOS ANGELES — In his first state of the state address on Tuesday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom proposed “a new data dividend” that could potentially allow residents to get paid for providing access to their data.
“California’s consumers should also be able to share in the wealth that is created from their data,” Newsom said, from the State Capitol in Sacramento. The Democrat said tech companies that “make billions of dollars collecting, curating and monetizing our personal data have a duty to protect it.”
Newsom, who took office just over four weeks ago, also used the address to call for the reeling in of two big-ticket projects — the state’s high-speed rail and proposed Delta twin tunnels.
The data dividend proposal follows the state legislature’s passage last year of a landmark data privacy bill, granting consumers specific rights related to their personal digital information that’s collected, shared or maintained by businesses. The legislation allows consumers to request that personal information be deleted and requires businesses that collect personal data to disclose how and why it’s being used.
Newsom said his staff asked him to come up with the plan. He didn’t provide details in his address, but some tech experts have suggested that companies like Facebook and Google should pay consumers for their data.
Democratic State Sen. Bob Hertzberg, who represents part of Los Angeles County and was one of the primary authors of the data privacy bill, described the plan as “the next frontier of the online and privacy conversation.”
Representatives for Facebook and Google didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.