GDPR changed how the world interacts with Europe
GDPR law, unlike the Data protection act, covers every country either in Europe territory or not. Due to that, some websites outside Europe blocked access to their content to European citizens.
The cause for that is the fear to be fined for not complying with the GDPR since outside the EU, countries might have different laws to approach users data privacy and companies from outside don’t feel the need to adjust to European laws.
This territorial increase caused a great impact on companies outside the EU that operate in great numbers with EU users. Like Facebook, Twitter or Apple, they all updated their privacy terms and twitter deleted all the account of users with less than 16 years.
How will GDPR affect businesses?
The bigger challenge for companies will be the big amount of investment they’ll have to do in order to update every platform online they have, especially if that platform collects information from their users. The greater companies like the ones referred above will mostly have no problems adjusting for this matter, they have teams to cover every aspect of this laws.
The lack of education on this subject is also a big problem, it’s a new subject and businesses are not yet educated nor prepared to deal with it.
With time there will be solid solutions and specialists to help those in need to comply with the law and supply the rights for the users in an automatic way.
In another hand smaller companies that require third parties to do so, have to search for other solutions or stop collecting data and serve a less personalized experience for their users.
Some companies in the USA are closing their content to the EU users, but, we’ll talk about it later.
How will GDPR affect digital marketers?
Since marketers work with data to learn what user likes and sees with the new laws those activities are compromised.
Marketers to have access to user data, they have to get consent, explicitly from the users. Also is required to keep a log of users consent, and, if they change their mind and opt out of your database, you have to forget that user losing precious information for your study.
The databases they had in the past need to be updated with the consent of every single user, that will impact in time and costs for companies.
The marketer will also in most cases the responsible to elaborate campaigns that complain with the GDPRs, that means create email marketing for example with opt-ins and make sure the user know exactly what it is giving consent to.
Blocked Websites on the EU
We gathered some examples of websites that blocked access to EU citizens. Some of them charge money for not collecting users personal data, and if you’re not willing to pay and desire to see the content you have to get your data collected.
Most of them are USA newspapers. Like for example:
According to NYTimes the major holders of the American newspapers like Tronc (owns the LA Times, New York Daily News, Chicago Tribune, Baltimore Sun and others) and Lee Enterprises (which owns 46 locally focused daily newspapers in 21 states) are blocking, for now, the access from EU citizens.
Some of them didn’t become so defensive and opted for a Europe version of their website with no data collection or asking for consent.
Curiosity: Not only newspapers are blocking Europe visitors, the MotoSport website, which is for the commerce of motorbike parts, also blocked the access to EU, due to GDPR.
The GDPR brought good measures to make the users online experience more trustworthy, like control over their data, new rights like to request the data and data mobility.
Overall the GDPR law came for good reason, but, since this is a new subject and there is not yet the right information out there, companies tend to misunderstand the true reasons behind them.
Instead of trying to comply with them and work for a world where the information is provided freely, they become defensive and block everyone that may bring harm.
Perhaps in the future, we can all work together to overcome these difficulties.