Data are an infinite resource which is continuously produced in ever increasing amounts. Personal data shares with general data non-consumability and non-rivality, enabling individuals to use their data as an unlimited currency to buy a vast amount of digital services. How can traditional competition principles (whose basic corner-stones are scarcity and limits to power of expenditure) apply to such a new environment? The article suggests that in order to pursue policy goals (consumer welfare, innovation, protection of individual fundamental rights) a holistic regulation, which takes into account the interests of the multiple stakeholders, and traditional consumer protection legislation are more appropriate, especially in the light of the general need for legal certainty.
Do “data markets” exist?