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It’s Been 2 Years Since the GDPR

It’s been two years since the GDPR went into effect. While I’m not a huge fan of the law, I can at least see the purpose of it. For the most part it’s been a minor inconvenience. What bothers me more is that two years later there are still news sites in the United States that are geoblocking European traffic rather than bringing their site into compliance.

The GD What Now?

The General Data Protection Regulation is a European Union law regulating the transfer of personal information over the internet. It’s the reason you suddenly started seeing those messages on websites in May 2018, informing you that the site uses cookies and asking you to provide or deny consent. Basically, a site needs to disclose that it’s gathering data and why, what third parties they might share it with, and gives you the right to see what they’ve collected.

Even my sites are compliant with this. You don’t need a degree in rocket science to implement what’s required. This leads me to believe that their stance is likely more ideological than commercial. You can still serve ads to European traffic, after all. Hits can be monetized regardless of where the visitor originates. I suspect it’s more of a “Screw you, this is America, we don’t have to follow no European laws!” thing.

Okay, fine, in some cases it might be a content licensing thing. I’m pretty sure, though, that the New York Daily News isn’t protecting some sweetheart deal to syndicate their content through an EU-based partner. It’s not like how Netflix Nordic doesn’t have The Office because the show was licensed to HBO Nordic, but Friends is on Netflix Nordic here because it wasn’t licensed to HBO Nordic.

The solution is the same either way: get a VPN. It’s just that with news, it’s irksome to be shut out of what’s happening. The internet as supposed to facility the free exchange of ideas, and as time goes in it becomes increasingly less that.

It’s Been 2 Years Since the GDPR

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