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'Take It Or Leave It' Deal Reached In California Legislature To Avoid Fight Over Internet Privacy

Wies van Erp / Flickr

Wies van Erp / Flickr

Proponents of an initiative headed for the November ballot that would give Californians new Internet privacy rights have reached a deal with state lawmakers.

A Bay Area real estate developer named Alastair Mactaggert spent millions of dollars gathering signatures to qualify his measure. It would allow Internet users to stop companies like Facebook and Google from sharing or selling their data. And it would give users the right to know what information about them businesses collect, share and sell.

The tech industry and business groups have vowed to fight the initiative. They’ve already combined to match Mactagger’s $2 million. And the campaign was shaping up to be a costly one.

Now, Mactaggert has reached a deal with two Democrats, Sen. Bob Hertzberg and Asm. Ed Chau, on a scaled-back version of his initiative — one week before the deadline for him to pull his measure off the November ballot.

It’s being framed to opponents as “take it or leave it” — they’ll spend the next few days reviewing the language and deciding whether take this deal — or take their chances with voters.

The terms of the deal will be amended into Chau’s AB 375; the bill’s first votes could come as soon as Monday.

Ben Adler

Capitol Bureau Chief

Capitol Bureau Chief Ben Adler first became a public radio listener in the car on his way to preschool – though not necessarily by choice. Now, he leads Capital Public Radio’s state Capitol coverage, which airs on NPR stations across California.  Read Full Bio 

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