WordPress, Tumblr Explore Selling User Data to AI Companies

AI needs internet data without asking. WordPress, Tumblr may sell user data to AI, raising privacy worries.

By Sunil Sonkar
2 Min Read
WordPress, Tumblr Explore Selling User Data to AI Companies

Today, AI needs lots of data, usually collected from the internet without consent. Recently, it came to light that WordPress and Tumblr, part of Automattic, are considering selling user data to AI firms.


AI tools like ChatGPT need loads of data to function. They collect information from the internet, sometimes without asking, to improve their algorithms. Now, with the news of companies selling user data, the debate on data privacy has intensified.

Automattic says users can choose not to have their data used for AI training. But there are doubts about how clear this process is and if it genuinely protects user privacy. Inside Automattic, there are disagreements about including private content in AI training data, which makes things even more complicated.

What is worrying is that advertising content not owned by Automattic might also end up in these data sets. This mixes up what is public and private, raising big questions about selling personal info.

Automattic suggests a feature to deter AI crawlers and search engine indexing, which sounds like a good idea. But it is uncertain if it will fully protect user data. Users should have complete control over how their data is used, with simple options to opt out.

Automattic’s partnerships with AI companies must prioritize user consent and be transparent. They should respect users who choose not to share their data and allow them to monitor its use.

We should all be careful about keeping our online privacy safe. That could mean checking our privacy settings often, being cautious about what we share online, and advocating for better privacy laws.

So, selling user data to AI companies reveals we need better privacy rules as well as clearer data practices. Tech companies should care more about user permission than making money. That is how we can feel safe online.

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