Search giant Google has announced that it will start paying some users in exchange for their search history as part of the company’s new project called ‘Screenwise’.
The new project, which aims to know more about how people use the Internet in their daily lives, is asking for volunteers to install a Chrome browser extension that allows data to be collected in exchange for “up to 25 dollars in gift cards”.
The company said that those who sign up would be given a 5-dollar Amazon.com Gift Card code, and then an addition 5-dollar gift card code every three months for staying with the project as a “thank you.”
According to technology website Ars Technica, the Screenwise Data Collector project is offering 100 dollars on signup, plus 20 dollars per month up to one year’s involvement.
“What we learn from you, and others like you, will help us improve Google products and services and make a better online experience for everyone,” the Screenwise website said.
“To be eligible to join, you must be 13 or older, have a Google Account (or sign up for one), and be ready to use the Google Chrome browser,” it added.
According to news.com.au, an official statement from Google said the panel is a small project that started at the beginning of the year and is completely optional to join.
“People can choose to participate if it’s of interest (or if the gift appeals) and everyone who does participate has complete transparency and control over what Internet use is being included in the panel,” the statement said.
“People can stay on the panel as long as they’d like, or leave at any time,” it added.