Originally posted by SeekerLou
It is like a peeping Tom that goes from window to window to window, following us to every room in our home,
That's not how it works. Not even close.
YOU visit their property. Using ATS as the example...
(1) You make the conscious decision to visit our domain, which we own, and on which has lots of code where we set our own cookies to manage the
(2) The value proposition you consciously make is that you accept the ads (with their cookies) and our cookies as a fair trade for the content and
services provided by ATS.
(3) If you make the conscious decision to visit another domain, owned by someone else, they may also have ads from the same source as ATS --
"advertising.com" for example. When on that other site, advertising.com typically has no idea you were previously on ATS, but they do know what ads
you saw while on ATS. With that information, they optimize the ads you see on the other domain.
The analytics code represented by Google Analytics cannot know who "YOU" are if you're not logged into Google in some other way, and does not retain
individual IP addresses. This is typical of cookie-based analytics. Server-based analytics typically store the IP addresses of all visitors, we don't
use those, nor do we store server logs.
Social networks are different. If you're logged into Facebook, and visit a site with the Facebook widget, their code knows "YOU" and knows you're
visiting that site, what you see, and for how long.
Some "behavioral" targeted systems for ad networks retain site browsing histories for up to 30 days. Three of our ad networks use such a system, but
the data is heavily anonimized (cryptic codes representing a web browser) and never associated with personal information.
Skeptic, I understand the dilema too, of being caught up in the middle.
I'm not. I understand the technology... and have never feared it.
There will be no such thing as anominity on the net.
People should be much more concerned with their ISPs, and the government.
While Congress is considering bills that would severely harm small websites and benefit big media companies (by the implementation of "privacy"
requirements)... they're also pushing bills to force every US ISP to record
EVERYTHING you do online
via deep packet inspection, and retain that for no less than 18 months -- but with no restrictions on
how the ISP can ultimately use that data.
So, very soon, your ISP will have very personal data on you, combined with everything you do online... with no limitations (so far) on what they can
do with it.