Yahoo Drops Support for Do Not Track

  |  May 5, 2014   |  Comments

Personalized content is good for you, apparently.

Yahoo will no longer honor Do Not Track requests from users.

The Do Not Track (DNT) standard was designed to be a way for Internet users to opt out of personalized website content and advertising in one place with a single Web browser control.

On the Yahoo Policy Blog last week, the company seemed to acknowledge that it was reversing its policy by saying, "As the first major tech company to implement Do Not Track, we've been at the heart of conversations surrounding how to develop the most user-friendly standard.

"However, we have yet to see a single standard emerge that is effective, easy to use, and has been adopted by the broader tech industry."

It explained that it thinks its services work best as a "personalized Web experience" and said that while it will no longer support Do Not Track, individual privacy settings will be configurable in its Privacy Center.

"The privacy of our users is and will continue to be a top priority for us," Yahoo said.

Although those wearing tin foil hats might express concern at the announcement, it is worth pointing out that the Do Not Track standard is already being ignored by other Web giants including Google and Facebook, and that despite the efforts of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), the system has not received widespread support.

In 2012, Microsoft met with controversy after it revealed that Internet Explorer 10 would ship with Do Not Track switched on by default, but bowing to pressure from WC3 it added a feature to turn it off during initial setup.

Elsewhere, Google is testing a revised version of its "Nudey Lady Pictures" setting, Incognito Mode.

This article was originally published on the Inquirer.


Chris Merriman

Chris Merriman is a freelance technology journalist. He graduated from the University of Sunderland a very long time ago. He got his first smartphone in 2003 and his first soldering iron in 1989. Before joining The INQUIRER, he divided his time between managing social media campaigns, music and tech journalism, radio presenting and DJing in London's glittering West End. His love of all things tech is inherited from his grandfather, who worked on NASA's Apollo program and used to keep discarded rocket prototypes in the garage to cannibalise for odd jobs round the house. Chris writes for technology publications including V3 and The INQUIRER.

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