Can consent be considered “freely given” if the alternative is to pay 10, 20 or 100 times the market price of your data to keep it to yourself?

That is what is asking in new complaints against seven major German and Austrian news websites.

It’s important to note that a somewhat similar test requiring the value derived by the company from the user’s data to be reasonably related to the value provided to the user. CCPA outlines the purpose of assessing the legality of a financial incentive.

In the cases at hand, the websites ask their users to either agree to letting their data be shared with tracking companies or take out a subscription for up to €80 (about $95) per year.

“Saying “no” to tracking is not only time-consuming (you have to enter your name, address and credit card data), but users also have to dig deep into their pockets,” according to noyb. “While the media companies only get a few cents per user for passing on data.”

The costs for these subscriptions go far beyond making up for lost ad revenue when users do not agree to tracking.

“Innovative advertising systems that media companies operate themselves and where both data and profits remain with the quality media are not only legally required, but probably also a question of economic survival,” Alan Dahi of noyb said. “We need to get back to a system where the reader follows the advertising instead of where advertising follows the reader.”