Advertising Trade Groups Object to Safari’s New Intelligent Tracking Protection

Marty Swant, writing for Adweek (headline: “Every Major Advertising Group Is Blasting Apple for Blocking Cookies in the Safari Browser”):

The biggest advertising organizations say Apple will “sabotage” the current economic model of the internet with plans to integrate cookie-blocking technology into the new version of Safari.

Six trade groups — the Interactive Advertising Bureau, American Advertising Federation, the Association of National Advertisers, the 4A’s and two others — say they’re “deeply concerned” with Apple’s plans to release a version of the internet browser that overrides and replaces user cookie preferences with a set of Apple-controlled standards. The feature, which is called “Intelligent Tracking Prevention,” limits how advertisers and websites can track users across the internet by putting in place a 24-hour limit on ad retargeting.

This is like a group of peeping Toms objecting to the invention of window shades. What ad trackers do is abhorrent, and what Safari’s new Intelligent Tracking Protection does is indisputably in the interests of users.

Steven Sinofsky (formerly president of the Windows division at Microsoft):

Stand strong Apple [rhetorical]. Had these groups come after us trying to offer browsing safety. MS backed down.

Pretty sure Apple is standing strong on this. Here’s a response I received from an Apple spokesperson:

“Apple believes that people have a right to privacy — Safari was the first browser to block third party cookies by default and Intelligent Tracking Prevention is a more advanced method for protecting user privacy.

Ad tracking technology has become so pervasive that it is possible for ad tracking companies to recreate the majority of a person’s web browsing history. This information is collected without permission and is used for ad re-targeting, which is how ads follow people around the Internet. The new Intelligent Tracking Prevention feature detects and eliminates cookies and other data used for this cross-site tracking, which means it helps keep a person’s browsing private. The feature does not block ads or interfere with legitimate tracking on the sites that people actually click on and visit. Cookies for sites that you interact with function as designed, and ads placed by web publishers will appear normally.”

Saturday, 16 September 2017