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Andrea Nahles is the head of the Social Democrats in Berlin who wants to stick it to Amazon & Co. Her idea is to make the data that all the digital commerce leaders use to stay on top available to all, which translates from the German as the “Data-for-Everyone” law. Quite simply, the law would make data available to everyone working in digital commerce.

Andrea Nahles giving a speech
© photocosmos1 / Shutterstock.com

SPD leader Andrea Nahles is disturbed by the market power of large US corporations. "The market capitalisation of Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Google and Netflix now accounts for over 27% of the US technology index Nasdaq," writes the politician in a guest article for the Handelsblatt.

Technological Development

Human beings have always been good at making their lives easier. From the first tool ever used to crack open a coconut all the way to the 21st century’s navigation systems and Google maps (which have almost completely wiped out the cartography industry – or changed it?), people have been making tools and technology to ease their existence. During the industrial revolution, steam power and electricity became the next big thing, scaring some, but those technologies stayed with us. Now we have algorithms and AI that are, yes, scaring some, whilst making our existence easier. Nahles argues that technology is neither good nor bad. It is simply HOW we implement it and share it.

The problem is that the front-runners in digital commerce have the luxury of our data. Most of the time they keep the data to themselves. This writer has a suite of Google apps on his phone that are never used, taking up space for absolutely no reason other than to make Google feel as though they are making all the money possible from a consumer. Isn't a good product supposed to let the end-consumer choose how they use that product?

The Data-For-Everyone Law

To even out the playing field, Andrea Nahles has suggested a “Data-for-Everyone” Law that would force Amazon, Google & Co. to allow everyone to look at data, curbing their control of our information for their own gain. These giants of digital commerce needed to be reined in to allow new ideas, smaller companies and other concepts into the Internet to ease the “our way or the highway” mentality imposed by the top 1% of Internet companies. A law such as this would also limit the abilities of these behemoth companies to take over formerly private players like WhatsApp and Waze.

Nahles went on to say that it works in the pharmaceutical industry, which could act as a model to get the digital world started with Data-For-Everyone.

And There Would Be Much Rejoicing – For SMES

Small and medium-sized enterprises would rejoice at the chance to have a fair fight in the digital commerce pool. Instead of jumping in at the deep-end (because there is only a deep-end, with Amazon and Google trolling the waters), smaller businesses and startups who have good ideas and a way to implement them, could start off in shallow waters, eventually learning to swim with the big fish.