Feudalism is a centuries-old concept. In medieval times, the nobility owned vast amounts of land. Serfs worked the land to create value, but most of that value was confiscated by the landlord.
Instead of farm produce, today the new asset class is data—created by us, but captured by digital landlords such as social-media companies, search engines, online retailers, governments, and banks. “Surfing the internet” has become “serfing the internet,” with users giving up intimate details of their lives for the internet lordships to aggregate, expropriate, and monetize. We, as the serfs, only get left with a few lousy cabbages.