It’s finally happening: Next year, people around the world will spend more time online than they do watching TV, according to new data from measurement company Zenith.
In 2019, people are expected to spend an average of 170.6 minutes each day on online activities like watching videos on YouTube, sharing photos on Facebook and shopping on Amazon. They’ll spend slightly less time — 170.3 minutes —watching TV.
The global transition from TV to internet as the main entertainment medium was a long time coming, but it also happened faster than expected. Last year, Zenith predicted that TV would still be more popular in 2019 but has since revised its estimates.
Netflix’s market value increased to about $150 billion today; it is now worth more than Comcast.
Comcast, the largest U.S. cable company, has been losing video subscribers as people cut the cord and move to streaming services … such as Netflix. Comcast had 22.3 million pay TV subscribers in the first quarter of 2018, down from 22.6 million a year earlier.
Meanwhile, Netflix has been gaining streaming users, adding more than seven million subscribers in the first quarter.
Of course, Comcast and Netflix have completely different businesses. Comcast owns a sizable broadband company in addition to cable. It also owns NBC and Dreamworks. It’s also planning on bidding on Fox’s movie and TV studios, cable networks and even a stake in Netflix competitor Hulu.
And most of Netflix’s growth is coming from its international expansion.
But the symbolism is hard to resist.
The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will take effect next week, on May 25, 2018. The GDPR’s impact extends far beyond existing data protection measures and affects business of all sizes — from solopreneurs to the largest corporations.
A recent survey conducted by Sage found that 91 percent of American businesses lack awareness surrounding the details of the GDPR, while 84 percent don’t understand the GDPR’s implications for their specific business. American businesses operating or serving customers in the EU need to understand what they need to do to prepare for a new reality.
The fact that the GDPR will impact companies far beyond the borders of the EU calls for greater understanding of how the regulation — and related protection of personal data — applies to organizations based outside the EU. In fact, the GDPR has direct implications for a massive amount of businesses worldwide, due to the EU’s vast trading partner roster. From May 25 on, the EU will effectively require all businesses to be compliant if they wish to operate in EU member states and serve individuals in the EU — either directly, or as a third party (read: at all).
Here are a few things American businesses should keep in mind leading up to, and through, the GDPR’s implementation:
It depends. The GDPR will affect all companies, individuals, corporations, public authorities or other entities that offer goods or services to individuals in the EU or that monitor their behavior there. For example, the GDPR applies to an American company whose website is made available to people in the EU, or a Boston-based HR manager in an international organization that collects data centrally from EU-based applicants and employees. The GDPR even applies to charities and nonprofit organizations that collect information from individuals in the EU.
Yes. Noncompliance can result in massive fines. In fact, if a company is not compliant with the GDPR by the May 25 deadline, it could face penalties as big as 20 million euros (around $24 million), or 4 percent of annual global turnover — whichever is a higheramount of money. Supervisory Authorities within the EU have “investigative and corrective powers” to monitor and impose these administrative fines. The Supervisory Authorities’ job is to closely observe corporate data practices and strictly enforce punishment if GDPR requirements are not met on May 25 — or any day thereafter.
The GDPR will require organizations with any ties to the personal data of individuals in the EU to examine — and potentially change — how they collect, store and process the information for business operations. Chiefly, however, the law will set a new global precedent around the importance of personal information ownership and consumer protection. Ensuring the integrity of personal data for individuals — not organizations — is a top priority for the GDPR.
Communicate. Organizations should use all available channels — from websites to social media to email — to tell all customers and users that the organization is taking steps to improve consumer data practices in accordance with the GDPR. Emphasize the company’s commitment to compliance with the GDPR — and the integrity of customer data. Update privacy policies and put together a simple, easy-to-find online FAQ about what the GDPR means for customer data to cover bases.
It is crucial for enterprises to review their methods of collecting personal data and their data processing systems in order to confirm compliance with the GDPR’s requirements. That requires the participation of staff across departments. It’s equally important to think about how outdated and irrelevant data will be disposed of, and how to safeguard the critical information that is still needed. A company-wide system for protecting personal data needs to be established and understood by every staff member. At Sage, we introduced a comprehensive GDPR training program for our employees to learn the basics of data protection law and to help our people understand the importance of safeguarding personal information.
In addition to the internal actions profiled above, organizations should consider devoting resources to the following preparation activities: independent audits of all data processes across departments; modifications to current data operations such as the establishment of staff retraining programs and procurement of more compliant information technology platforms; appointing and training someone responsible for data protection matters, possibly a Data Protection Officer; and launching documentation processes that demonstrate ongoing compliance with the GDPR.
Back in 2010, a young Mark Zuckerberg told lawmakers that Facebook would always be free. Eight years later, a more grown-up Zuckerberg updated his stance to Congress, saying “There will always be a version of Facebook that is free.”
That statement leaves open the possibility that Facebook will someday offer a paid version — perhaps one without ads and the ensuing data scandal that has Zuckerberg testifying in front of lawmakers right now.
But would people actually pay for an ads-free version?
According to a new online survey by Recode and market research company Toluna, most Americans wouldn’t pay, despite how little they trust Facebook with their personal information. 77 percent would stick to the regular ads version, while 23 percent said they’d pay not to have ads.
Facebook makes its money by leveraging user data in order to serve users ads it thinks are pertinent. Facebook generates about $9 a month per user in the U.S. by targeting you with ads. Theoretically, it would want about the same to offer the service ad-free.
So for those who would be willing to pay for Facebook, how much would they be willing to pay?
Nearly 42 percent said they’d spend between $1 and $5 a month for Facebook. About 25 percent said they’d pay between $6 and $10 — or what Facebook is already making per user.
The survey was conducted online on April 11 among 750 U.S. adults.