The Internet Is No Longer Free

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privacyILLUSTRATED BY JULIA SADLER.
If you want to keep your privacy online, you're going to have to pony up.

That's the thesis of Curtis Silver's damning new piece for The Next Web, in which he argues that privacy online has gone from a right to a commodity.

With the dawn of the social-media age, many of us relinquished our privacy and embraced a culture of sharing. But, thanks to some NSA-inspired paranoia, people have become more conscious of the need for regulation of privacy on the Internet.

Silver spoke to David Bakke of Money Crashers, who believes that an industry based on paying for privacy has emerged from our growing fears. Private-messaging apps like Confide and Wickr are just the beginning.

“As companies begin to or continue to collect more information about us and our browsing preferences and so forth, I think you’ll see a growing number of businesses either offering new ways to communicate and surf the Internet in a secure fashion, or featuring ways to pay to eliminate such intrusions on our privacy,” Bakke says. “And I think you’ll see more and more Internet users willing to pay for such services.”

Silver goes on to argue that before we start paying for added privacy online, we need to educate ourselves about the pitfalls of oversharing. "We need to be vigilant," he says, "as to what kind of personal data we’re so eagerly sharing with the world."

For more on Silver's fascinating thoughts on the growing business of online privacy click here. (The Next Web)