Yahoo recently revealed that it is plugging its ears to consumer “do not track” requests. As Elizabeth Dwoskin at the Wall Street Journal reports, the company is instead opting for a “personalized experience” for their consumers. “Here at Yahoo, we work hard to provide our users with a highly personalized experience,” the Yahoo Privacy team wrote in a blog post. “We keep people connected to what matters most to them, across devices and around the world. We fundamentally believe the best web is a personalized one.”
The company will now disregard the “do not track” signals in browsers that are activated by users to specify that they prefer online privacy. When inactivated, Yahoo is able to track and gather consumer data allowing them to better target users with relevant ads based on online activity.
In the blog post, Yahoo cites the lack of clear standards in the “do not track” policy writing in support of its actions, “We have yet to see a single standard emerge that is effective, easy to use and has been adopted by the broader tech industry.” But is this an excuse to offer no consumer privacy?
As privacy issues balloon, brands need to wake-up to offering consumers opt-in privacy controls. Sure a “personalized” and targeted ad experience sounds ideal, but only if both parties obtain what they want—otherwise you risk losing an audience altogether.