Reed Smith Client Alerts

Data is the new oil – the metaphor neatly sums up what market participants have long known. In the age of the Internet of Things, data can be a valuable commodity. Does anyone own this commodity? If no, does the digital economy call for the creation of a right to data?

Auteurs: Anette Gärtner

EU Flag with binary code

1. Public consultation “Building a European Data Economy”

In a previous alert, we talked about the FTC’s conference on automated vehicles in Washington on June 28, 2017. Automated cars and related legal issues are also hotly debated in Europe. In January, the European Commission asked stakeholders to participate in the public consultation “Building a European Data Economy”. A public consultation is a process by which the views of the public on legislative initiatives are sought; the Commission as the institution entrusted with the task of proposing new European Union legislation resorts to this process on a regular basis.

The “Building a European Data Economy” consultation raised the question to what extent digital non-personal machine-generated data are traded and exchanged. The Commission also wanted to know whether the evolving technological landscape calls for the creation of an ownership-type right to machine-generated data.