EU cookie directive

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by SailorTom, Mar 9, 2011.

  1. SailorTom macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    #1
  2. Dunmail macrumors regular

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    Mar 27, 2009
    Location:
    Skipton, UK
    #2

    My impression is that the regulators haven't figured out just what level of site visitor opt-in is necessary. Will session cookies be covered for example. Will a (reasonably prominent) notice stating that the site uses cookies for x,y & z be sufficient?

    The intention is to protect the privacy of surfers from advertisers (mainly but there could be other "interested" parties) from tracking their behaviour. The risk is that if directive is misinterpreted or interpreted in a heavy handed manner then web users are going to get mightily p***ed off with having to confirm each cookie. Most users won't currently know just how many cookies their browser accepts on a day to day basis or how to restrict third party cookies etc.

    Taken to the extreme it could render Google analytics illegal as that is effectively a user tracking system.
     
  3. SailorTom thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 15, 2008
    #3
    It's true that the regulators don't really know what to do about this. I can see why its come about because of privacy issues, and somewhat agree something needs to be done based on a recent experience. I use wordpress for a lot of my web dev, including a couple of analytics plugins, one of which is wp.com stats. Recently Automattic started using a 3rd party that adds user tracking code, in addition to what Automattic already do. There was no mention of this in the plugin docs. It's accepted that Automattic are going to run some tracking code when using the plugin, nut sneaking in another tracker is not a good thing to do and most people would not realise how much tracking is being done.

    Anyway, tracking is useful and users should know about it, but this does not seem to be the way to solve the problem. Education is probably a better option.
     
  4. Laird Knox macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2010
    #4
    Does this only impact web sites in the EU? Would a web site in the US have to provide the same controls for somebody viewing it in the EU? (Kind of the reverse of the current online gambling issues.)
     
  5. Dunmail macrumors regular

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    Mar 27, 2009
    Location:
    Skipton, UK
    #5
    It's hard to determine where the limit of jurisdiction lies with this and other web issues. I would imagine that this ruling only applies to sites hosted within the EU. There does seem to be a mirroring of legislation between the US and EU with regards to the web so there may be similar regulations in place or being proposed Stateside.

    The article linked to by the OP has a quote stating that the authorities are unlikely to be slapping wrists for a while yet as they haven't figured out what rules are to be enforced. Also given how long accessibility/disabled legislation has been in place - how many websites are fully compliant with that? Once the rules are in place it will be the big sites that will be targeted first and a sort of modus operandi will filter down.
     

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