Online Ad Firm Agrees that Cookies Can “Be Matched to Specific User Details”

The online ad industry has been hiding behind the claim that cookies, IP addresses, pixel tags, and other methods of tracking don’t identify users. But inside the industry, a different conversation occurs. That’s why it’s always important when an industry official offers us a glimpse of how they view online ad industry data collection practices. In “Digital Brands 2008,” a UK-based publication, there’s such a helpful comment: “Rob Watt, media director at digital agency Avenue A/Razorfish, says, “If users fully understood how cookies work and how they can be used for behaviourial targeting, for example, then they’d probably opt out. Although data is anonymous, it could be matched to specific user details.” [Digital Branding-Privacy Issues. Nicola Smith, NMA Magazine. April 3, 2008. sub required].

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Author: jeff

Jeff Chester is executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy. A former journalist and filmmaker, Jeff's book on U.S. electronic media politics, entitled "Digital Destiny: New Media and the Future of Democracy" was published by The New Press in January 2007. He is now working on a new book about interactive advertising and the public interest.

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