Yoon emphasized that users would be fully informed about the data the company collects and have to opt-in to the program.
The problem Yoon said he is aiming to solve is that users' online behavior is being widely tracked now by a variety of companies and advertising networks without their consent or compensation.
Earn intends to pay users for the data they give to Choice, a value exchange that doesn't exist in the online advertising market now, Yoon said.
"Your navigation across your phone is what's interesting to us," Yoon said. "You're giving it away for free, let us pay you for it. Or, don't let us see it."
If people use Earn for a day, they get 1,000 points. After 30 days and 30,000 points, they'd get US$20, for example, Yoon said.
If only a small number of people opted into Earn, Been would be able to create sample-based inferences that might be useful to other parties, similar to how Gallup and Nielsen work, Yoon said.
It's still early days for Been, which is a small, self-funded company. Yoon said it is just he a co-founder, Sang Shin, and three or four part-time employees.
But he's been working on Choice for a couple of years and believes over the next five years there will be growing interest in paying users directly for their data.
"We are trying to make data more expensive for people so you can own it," he said.
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