I can picture the scene. Some EU bureaucrat, on his low tech EU email client, had to go through the EU complicated way of reporting yet another viagra spam email. “This has to stop!” he righteously complained loudly to other EU bureaucrats twiddling their thumbs. “I cannot receive that email I need from Nigeria because the damn system keeps thinking it is a fake prince sending it!” The rest of us don’t know why they didn’t just use Gmail instead. We hardly remember what spam is here in the rest of the world, because Google’s AI deals with it so effectively before it ever gets near us.
But the EU bureaucrat did what EU bureaucrats do. He made a committee that started a process which made national committees which authorized funds to research a topic which needed researchers to hire more bureaucrats to end up with a massive nonsensical blurb which they eventually got other EU bureaucrats to vote for and announced to the world in what is easily the grandest proof of how far behind reality they all are.
GDPR is so broad in its scope it is legally practically trash. The more you read “experts” analyze it, the worse it gets. Since when can a legal requirement from one group of countries force the entire planet to do something? If I, a euroloving citizen, travel to a remote tropical island with 50 inhabitants and one computer and the hotel there asks for my data without doing all the GDPR it needs in IT infrastructure and communicating, can I then sue them? It seems I can.
For anyone with the slightest experience in IT and database infrastructure, the more you look at GDPR, the more you despair. Because unlike the counter productive cookie banner which simply wastes a little time, GDPR was implemented using what looks like knowledge of current IT practices. Some of those well paid committees and their well paid experts actually did some work this time and hashed together a semblance of what they think a modern IT infrastructure should look like. Which is even more problematic.
This is a big planet and a “legal entity” is an extremely fluid notion. You are reading a personal blog where I publicly air all sorts of complaints about things I see and don’t like. Do I have to prove I don’t make money out of this blog? What if you are subconsciously impressed enough to hire me as a consultant as a result of all this wisdom? Sure there are enormous companies with legal departments and big IT clans. Even those however have very different approaches to how they are organized both in terms of the role of marketing departments and in terms of IT philosophies. And of course probably 99% of “legal entities” on Earth have no IT department and no marketing department. Or if they do it is one person struggling to get the basics done.
I am really curious to see the first case of someone being charged under GDPR. What sort of “experts” will be called upon and what sort of “standard” they will retrospectively demand. “Sure, you used double opt in for the past ten years, but look, here on page 2536 of GDPR, clause 7d stipulates that….” And then you will counter with by analyzing entries in your database from eight years ago. And then some sort of IT wizard judge will be able to come to a conclusion?
If GDPR was designed to curtail Google and Facebook it is the most ridiculous and destructive indirect way to do it. The EU can slap penalties on these companies anytime it wants to anyway. It doesn’t need to cripple everyone else in the meantime. If anything, Googlem Facebook and other big U.S. platforms will come out stronger from all this as millions of small companies will prefer to use their cloud infrastructure rather than try and figure out how to be GDPR compatible. If GDPR was made in order to promote specific types of marketing and penalise others it is high time Euro bureaucrats crawled out of their holes and visited the real world. Marketing has moved a long way since those Viagra emails only you keep receiving. because your email infrastructure was built by a committee.
The EU put up a nonsensical, needless roadblock to doing business in Europe. Legitimate Nigerian princes with large inheritances will simply do their business somewhere else.