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Europa yerra el rumbo digital

ESTOCOLMO – Europa no pasó la primera gran prueba de diseño de una buena política de tecnologías digitales. En mayo, la Comisión Europea anunció que crearía un mercado digital único con 500 millones de consumidores, capaz de aportar 415 000 millones de euros (463 000 millones de dólares) al PIB de la Unión Europea y crear unos 3,8 millones de empleos. Por desgracia, una decisión reciente sobre una cuestión clave del mundo digital (la privacidad de los datos) amenaza descarrilar el proceso.

En junio, los ministros de justicia y asuntos internos de la UE votaron a favor de conservar un alto grado de poder nacional sobre la protección de la privacidad digital, en vez de crear un único conjunto de reglas para los 28 países de la UE. Si el Parlamento Europeo aprueba la propuesta, volverán a introducirse normas nacionales divergentes. Más preocupante aún, se abriría la puerta a la prohibición de actividades de minería de datos inocuas de las que depende la publicidad en línea.

La publicidad digital permite a los ciudadanos de la UE acceder a información, material educativo, canales de comercio y sitios de entretenimiento sin pagar por sus servicios directamente. La inversión en publicidad digital en Europa crece rápidamente; los ingresos de la industria se multiplicaron por más de cuatro desde 2006, mientras la economía europea en su conjunto se estancaba. La embestida de privacidad de la UE amenaza poner fin a todo esto. Además de la carga administrativa derivada de nuevos costos e impedimentos burocráticos, se abre también la posibilidad real de que las nuevas normas destruyan el modelo de negocios de muchas de las empresas digitales más destacadas de Europa.

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