Proposals of Google Privacy Sandbox remains revenue but poor privacy

Feb 04, 2021 - Views: 689

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When Google Privacy Sandbox is under scrutiny over competition concerns, it has launched an update and claimed that the experimental ad-targeting techniques are developed as part of the plan to reduce the cost of cookies for third-party on its Chrome browser. Through an experiment, it is shown that they are “nearly as effective as cookie-based approaches”.

online website performance testing

Proposals of Google Privacy Sandbox remains revenue but poor privacy

Google has been researching Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC) to target ads following groups having similar interests. This change is believed to be more outstanding than the current (dysfunctional) “norm” of targeting individuals based on third parties tracking everything they do online.

Google could continue to permit FLoCs to do interest-based advertising after finishing the support for third-party trackers. However, this has met many disagreements. At the beginning of Jan, the UK’s competition and  Markets Authority (CMA) investigated the Privacy Sandbox proposal when digital marketing companies and others from newspapers and technology companies complain Google is abusing its dominant position.

However, on the privacy front, Google does not conduct as well announcement. According to Electronic Frontier Foundation, the proposals can raise the risk of discrimination against vulnerable groups of people, whose online activity would be pattern-matched with others without their say, and could leak sensitive info about them to third parties.

Because of objection between advertisers and users, Google has shifted to a replacement for tracking cookies to all the relevant stakeholders.

In an update today, changes in Sandbox are made to reduce advertisers’ concerns. FLoC technology will create “at least 95% of the conversions per dollar spent when compared to cookie-based advertising”.

However, there is no clear clue to prove that number. Its spokesman did note that it will be opening up public testing in March and expects advertisers to join in kicking FLoC’s tires then. 

Although the ad tech industry has been blocking/delaying its depreciation of third-party cookies, is busy spinning up its own contenders to replace trackers, Google seems comfortable quantifying FLoC’s potential impact on ad revenue. 

Google’s blog post is fuzzy somehow. For example, “viable privacy-first alternatives” and “hiding individuals ‘in the crowd’ ” but Google did not provide metrics or data on how much privacy users stand to gain if it is preferred post-cookie future comes to pass.

Test results are shown in October also try to demonstrate FLoCs can deliver other relevant ad metrics. In fact, there is no difference.

A Spokesman of Google said that We’re trying to address non-transparent forms of tracking, across websites ( online website performance testing), with privacy-safe mechanisms for consumers. 

FLoCs are just a small part of Google’s Privacy Sandbox proposals. The company is trying to replace various other key components of the ad tech ecosystem, improve online website testing performance. 

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