Government Web sites in the U.K. and Europe offer a sensible approach.
Peterson argues that the current restriction hinders the ability of federal government agencies to deliver the best possible Web site experience to visitors and prevents agencies from taking advantage of some of the latest technology. He writes:
A quick scan of a few government Web sites here in the U.K., including our own prime minister's Web site, shows the liberal use of both first-party cookies and third-party cookies. So it appears that we in the U.K. aren't having the same cookie-related debate. Why is that? Are we better or less informed on the issue? Should we be more worried about cookies than we seem to be?
Europe went through angst on this issue a few years ago. The European Parliament passed a directive in 2002 on privacy and electronic communications. Leading up to this directive, there had been a concern in the industry that cookies would effectively be made illegal as a breach of personal privacy. In the end, the European Parliament concluded it wasn't cookies or Web bugs that infringed privacy but the inappropriate use of these devices. The following passage from the directive is particularly relevant to the current U.S. debate:
I'm not an expert on this issue, but it seems to me that having such a legal framework helps with the issue to some extent. It doesn't always take the emotion out of the subject, nor does it prevent individuals forming a judgment about cookies and making their own views known. But that's society for you.
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Neil Mason is SVP, Customer Engagement at iJento. He is responsible for providing iJento clients with the most valuable customer insights and business benefits from iJento's digital and multichannel customer intelligence solutions.
Neil has been at the forefront of marketing analytics for over 25 years. Prior to joining iJento, Neil was Consultancy Director at Foviance, the UK's leading user experience and analytics consultancy, heading up the user experience design, research, and digital analytics practices. For the last 12 years Neil has worked predominantly in digital channels both as a marketer and as a consultant, combining a strong blend of commercial and technical understanding in the application of consumer insight to help major brands improve digital marketing performance. During this time he also served as a Director of the Web Analytics Association (DAA) for two years and currently serves as a Director Emeritus of the DAA. Neil is also a frequent speaker at conferences and events.
Neil's expertise ranges from advanced analytical techniques such as segmentation, predictive analytics, and modelling through to quantitative and qualitative customer research. Neil has a BA in Engineering from Cambridge University and an MBA and a postgraduate diploma in business and economic forecasting.
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