Two stories from today’s Journal on what it costs to get quicker access to information.
“Pay for Wi-Fi? Only at a Luxury Hotel,” Wall Street Journal, February 19, 2015 D1. While mid-range hotels include wi-fi in the rack rate to remain competitive, luxury hotels include surcharges for wi-fi or faster wi-fi.
“AT&T Tacks a Privacy Charge on High Speed,” Wall Street Journal, February 19, 2015 B4. If you want hyper-speed Internet from AT&T, there are two prices. It’s $70 for “basic,” but $99/month if you want to opt out of having your information turned over to others for advertising and marketing purposes. Think of it as having basic network channels for free (actually, the price you pay is having to put up with the advertisements that are tied to the product you want – i.e., the shows), versus what we’ll pay for ad-free (or ad-less) TV. Call that $29 the privacy premium.
What are you willing to pay for access to “your” information? Are you getting what you pay for? Can you charge the other folks who harvest your browsing history $29/month for the privilege, and cut out the middleman?