1. 23
  1.  

  2. 38

    I thought someone missed the satire tag at first.

    1. 28

      I agree. Also this blog post is beyond surreal. They are (in polite words) actually threatening people to use cookies or, otherwise we can expect them to use even worse techniques (fingerprinting)? And we should take a ‘solution’ from one of the co-inventors of this terrible surveillance model?

      At any rate, I am happy to see that they are apparently worried by Mozilla and Apple’s recent actions.

      1. 8

        Meh. After you’ve seen enough of it, Machiavellian doublespeak stops being “surreal” and just looks trite. By now, this is exactly what I expect from Alphabet Inc.

        1. 9

          New motto: “Don’t be honest.”

          1. 2

            Doublespeak is trite, Trite needn’t be right. That we should actively fight.

            Sorry for nitpicking.

      2. 22

        tl;dr: “We want to both have our cake and eat it.”

        A bit longer version: “we notice people block cookies because they don’t want tracking and ads. So we’ll come up with something that will result in tracking - BUT only for the sake of ads. Where we make our money.”

        I don’t envy the guy who had to write all of this up, trying to wrap it in a way that would put the spin “Don’t be evil” on the above.

        1. 21

          This is absolutely unhinged coming from Google.

          Mass fingerprinting has been around for years, even though most browsers would happily accept a trillion cookies from all and sundry during that time. Laying it at the feet of cookie blocking just serves to bolster their insinuation that “other browsers” combating cookie tracking are ignoring fingerprinting, and to build the false dichotomy that in order to combat fingerprinting they have to allow third party cookies. I don’t know, seems to me like the real privacy concern is both.

          But hey, at least the 84,000 ad network tracker cookies people pick up after reading one article will be “better labelled”.

          Particularly daft:

          Second, blocking cookies without another way to deliver relevant ads

          You could target ads based on…what they’re appearing on? You know, the way advertising worked in television and print and everywhere else for the entire history of humankind prior to the last few years? But no, let’s pretend that Mass Surveillance is a hard requirement for advertising.

          1. 16

            Anecdotally to your point, the only advertising I ever click on is yarn shop adds on Ravelry. It’s a knitting and crochet site, where the site admins can reasonably guess that yarn is what people want to buy if you are on that site. No mass surveillance required for those ads.

          2. 19

            “Privacy is paramount to us, in everything we do”… The fact that these are the opening words make it very surreal

            1. 29

              Relevant links: duckduckgo.com, firefox.com, github.com/gorhill/uBlock, eff.org/privacybadger.

              1. 9

                Very apropos, I think, is Privacy Badger’s recent upgrade to detect and block the first-party cookie sharing that Google Analytics does: https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2019/07/sharpening-our-claws-teaching-privacy-badger-fight-more-third-party-trackers

                1. 5
                2. 8

                  Ad company complains about adblockers and wants you to use their adware; more at 11.

                  1. 13

                    From TFA:

                    First, large scale blocking of cookies undermine people’s privacy by encouraging opaque techniques such as fingerprinting.

                    I just want to point out that for everyone who thinks Firefox is the paragon of privacy, this is the same argument that Mozilla used when deciding to implement link-tracking in Firefox. To paraphrase it, “We know this is going to be used to track people’s movements on the web but it at least when done this way, it results in a better user experience while their rights are being violated.”

                    1. 17

                      Mozilla is no paragon, but when the credible browser vendors consist of

                      • Cartoonishly evil for-profit corporation no longer pretending to be benevolent
                      • Cartoonishly evil for-profit corporation that recently began pretending to be benevolent
                      • Imperfect non-profit

                      …the most reasonable choice is extremely clear.

                      1. 0

                        Or you could use a Macintosh?

                        1. 2
                          • Cartoonishly evil for-profit corporation no longer pretending to be benevolent and also no longer making its web browser not suck
                        2. -2

                          Cartoonishly evil for-profit corporation pretending to be an imperfect non-profit?

                          1. 2

                            Which corporation are you thinking of here? The Mozilla Corporation is wholly owned by the Mozilla Foundation.

                        3. 9

                          I fully support Mozilla’s decision here. The options were:

                          • do nothing about HTTP-based link tracking,
                          • drop support for HTTP redirects (good luck with that!)
                          • incentivize sites to replace tracking via HTTP redirects with a method that is more transparent, performant, and — for those who really want to — can be blocked without breaking the sites.
                        4. 4

                          You need to go through two additional links to find any engineering content. https://www.chromium.org/Home/chromium-privacy/privacy-sandbox

                          Op: Next time, please submit the tech bits and leave out the PR thing.

                          1. [Comment removed by author]

                            1. 1

                              Funding for the content publisher who provided the thing you are reading is what’s halving.

                              1. 0

                                Seem to have misread it then, removed.

                              2. 0

                                If you don’t want publishers to get paid just don’t go to their pages. New York Times doesn’t get paid if you don’t go to their site.

                              3. 2

                                So who, if anybody, is working on solutions to the erosion of privacy online?

                                Two ideas that come to mind:

                                1. A non-commercial browser engine with no corporate sponsors. Mozilla is marginally better than Google, but they still make most of their money from Google and other companies who ultimately want less online privacy.

                                Personally, I would tolerate slightly broken rendering to have more secure and private browsing, so I’m willing to tolerate (and even help fix) a broken or incomplete browser.

                                1. A search engine that doesn’t index or link to pages that use fingerprinting or otherwise invade privacy. duckduckgo is great, but what does it achieve if 95% of search results load google analytics and google’s js mirrors?

                                Are there any projects working along these lines?