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I started using a website on the free version knowing it was somewhat locked down. But after using it for a while I learned that I cant download my own data unless I pay for the premium plan. I am totally fine with the free plan being locked down and not having all of the features, but not allowing me to download my own data doesn't seem right.

I guess the underlying question is do I own the data on a website that I created an account? Does that change if I pay for that service?

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...do I own the data on a website that I created an account?

Maybe not. Read the Terms of Service for the site; it is a legally binding contract. The TOS will outline what you agree to when opening an account and using the site. When signing up for the free plan, you agreed to the TOS, and you probably agreed to a stipulation that the site owners are only obligated to release your data when you pay for a premium plan.

You could try and take them to court and protest the contract, but #1, you signed the contract; and #2, going to court costs a lot of money.

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  • You also aren't any worse off than if they had simply turned their servers off - and since you aren't paying them, they certainly would have the right to do that, wouldn't they? – D M May 5 at 4:41

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