Andrea Jelinek, chairwoman of the new European Data Protection Board, which will coordinate enforcement of the new law, criticized the blackout and said that companies had been given a long time to prepare. For weeks, businesses as varied as Uber, bike shops and restaurants have been sending notes to alert people to updated privacy policies as a result of the law, known as G.D.P.R.
“It didn’t just fall from heaven,” Ms. Jelinek said in a statement. “Everyone has had plenty of time to prepare.”
Europe’s new privacy measures allow people to limit the information they leave behind when browsing social media, reading the news or shopping online. Businesses must detail how someone’s data is being handled, and clear a higher bar to target advertising using personal information.
The law had been seen as focusing on Silicon Valley tech giants like Facebook and Google, but publishers and advertising companies have warned that it will harm their businesses in particular because it restricts how information is packaged and shared to sell advertising. It is common for websites to use tracking software to gather information about visitors in order to better target ads.
Digital advertising is an important sources of income for many news organizations, particularly as print readership and advertising falls, but policymakers in Europe argue the practices have become intrusive and ripe for abuse, with personal information shared far beyond what most people realize.