An introduction to digital consent: Why a new definition with new tools and specifications are needed

Benjamin Balder Bach

Playlists: 'bornhack2023' videos starting here / audio

Do you also have consent fatigue? Are you also worried about the direction things are heading?

I would like to start an action-oriented conversation around understanding digital consent in a new and fundamentally different way.

We need of course to move away from the awful "cookie banners" and to be asking people about 1) real and informed consent 2) when it matters and 3) offering them solutions to audit, understand, manage and revoke consent.

Here's a rough draft of what we'll go through:

- Cookie banners: How consent is currently (mis)managed
- Understanding and defining consent differently
- How a better digital consent solution could look
- An Open Source solution (spoilers: I want YOU to help build something)


This talk is heavily improvised and experimental in the sense that it's looking for your feedback. Don't expect beautiful slides or a clear message.

As prior background to this work, I've worked with a government perspective of consent in GovStack's working group for a Consent Building Block. In the working group, we have released the first early version of a specification for a generic consent platform for government solutions. The specification contains both a definition of consent, a set of functional requirements and API specifications for implementing parties.