I cannot make this stuff up. The representative to the W3C working
group from the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) proposed this
change the other day to the Tracking Definitions and Compliance
section of the DNT standard:
Marketing should be added to the list of “Permitted Uses for Third
Parties and Service Providers” in Section 6.1 of the Tracking
Definitions and Compliance Document.
Via email, two other members of the working group expressed
confusion. One asked, “What do you mean by marketing? What would
be permitted?” Another said, “I don’t follow.” (This is how polite
people in standards groups say “WTF?”)
Do Not Track is (was?) a fine idea for a W3C standard, but at this point, browser makers should take things into their own hands. Just add (more) features to browsers to allow users to assert tighter control over tracking by advertisers.
These big advertising groups clearly feel they are entitled to collect this tracking data; they’re not.