Oct 26, 2020
Response to the Expert Committee Report on Non-personal Data Governance Framework
Concerns with the Non-Personal Data Governance Framework
Our response to the committee appreciates the intention of the framework to better distribute the public value of data. However, we highlight that the distinction it attempts to make between personal and non-personal data and the categories of data it creates, is difficult owing to the many ways data can relate to an individual that is not only based on the origin and source of data. Further, we point out that anonymised data can also be used to the detriment of the individual.
We also suggest better policy pathways to fulfil the report's intention to redistribute value in the data economy through three strategies - by updating competition law to include control over data and network effects; platform neutrality to ensure Big Tech platforms cannot unfairly discriminate other businesses; and platform interoperability to enable consumer choice and reduce the weight of network effects.
Our response also notes that AI needs to advance through better computing power and talent, not placing higher reliance on Big Data as is proposed by the framework. We also point out that the mandating sharing of data is likely to stifle business innovation and healthy markets, as through such mandating sharing and ambiguity of threshold set by the framework, larger players are likely to benefit.
Further, the introduction of data trusts appears premature as issues of community representation and power dynamics first need addressal. The framework could also enable overreach by the state that would result in the infringement of individual rights and liberties and causing a chilling effect on the functioning of democracy and markets.