Do Not Track List Won't Make Advertisers Happy

from the resistance-is-futile dept

Just as Facebook is looking to launch its own behavioral advertising network, AOL and some privacy groups are pitching the idea of a "Do Not Track" list that would effectively let people opt-out of behavioral advertising tracking. It's a challenging issue to deal with. Advertisers, obviously, want more data and information about who is viewing their ads, as well as having the ability to better target those ads. At the same time, the theory is that people are much more receptive to highly targeted, relevant ads. The problem, though, is that many internet surfers have no idea how much information they're handing over and how it's being used (and many would argue that the more relevant ads aren't actually appearing). If they knew how much data was being collected, however, many would probably be quite upset. The purpose of the Do Not Track list would be to give them back some control. Advertisers, of course, won't like this idea at all, as they often feel it's their divine right to have as much information as possible. They'll also complain that without this data, advertisements will actually be less relevant and less useful -- which might actually be true. In the end, though, it seems like while a "Do Not Track" may get lots of publicity, but how many people will actually sign up? Certainly I'd expect techies who are more concerned about this kind of thing to sign up -- but the average consumer? Unlike the "Do Not Call" list, most people don't even realize that they're being tracked, and so are much less likely to have the incentive to opt out of being tracked.

Filed Under: advertising, behavioral targeting, do not track
Companies: aol


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 Nov 2007 @ 9:54pm

    Re: Just Don't Use The Damn Web

    No one can tell you what code to NOT put on your private site - as long as it is not malware or trojans or viruses.
    Oh yeah? Try putting some code up that generates kiddy porn or displays death threats against the president. Then let us know how that worked out for you. Oh wait, they probably won't let you post comments to blogs from prison.

    In other words, your site is your property, you can add whatever code you wish to ad.
    You've got a lot to learn. There are all kinds of thing you can't do even on your own property. Having your own property isn't exactly like having your own country if that's what you're thinking. You are still subject to laws. If laws are passed that say you can't track people on your website, then doing so will be illegal. Whether you like it or not.

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