Why do people seem to think governments are the only threat to our rights in this space?
Large corporations already watch and log everything they can about you. Not just your metadata, but what you do (deep packet inspection), where you are (location-based services), what you buy (sharing all your transactions with "affiliates"), and what you say (facebook messages, etc).
What's worse, this data is all legally their property (at least in the U.S.), so they can basically do whatever they want with it, sell it, store it, give it to the government in exchange for favors, or worse. AFAIK, you cant even demand to see what they are keeping on file for you.
Their capabilities are not just passive, either. They can control what services you can access (now that net neutrality is dead), gouge you financially with little justification (credit ratings are based on proprietary algorithms), open you to barrages of advertisement, trick you into legal commitments you dont understand (do you have $500 to have a lawyer review that EULA?), and guess what? Government provides all the tools to enforce all of this. And you pay for ALL of it.
As long as we are using analogies from EU history, the government is a neutered king who lives far away and you rarely feel his presence. Big Business is the nobility who owns all the land, controls all the food, hoards all the money, and controls your life on a day-to-day basis. Like an indentured servant, you have no choice to participate and hand over most of the fruits of your labor. What are you going to do - stop buying things and stop having a job?
I'll head off one criticism of what I'm saying. This is not conspiracy theory, because there is no conspiracy necessary. This is a system, and most of what I've said above is just legal fact.
Unlike your government, you can not participate in corporate governance, you can't request meeting minutes under FOIA, internal rules and policies are rarely published. You have no voice except your dollars (and many industries are so anticompetitive you really have little choice).
Maybe big business has all this opportunity but doesnt take advantage of it. Do you think so?