W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > ietf-http-wg-old@w3.org > January to April 1997

cookie draft

From: Josh Cohen <josh@netscape.com>
Date: Tue, 18 Mar 1997 16:31:50 -0800 (PST)
To: http-wg@cuckoo.hpl.hp.com
Message-Id: <ML-3.1.858731510.5137.josh@birdcage>
Let me start by saying, so there's no misunderstanding, Im 
against modifying the cookie draft to accomodate cross-domain sharing
of cookies.

The opinions expressed on what is right or wrong are my personal
views, not necessarily Netscape's.

> 
> It is important to advertisers to be able to know the number of
> unique individuals who see their message and to be able to control
> it.  (eg: show this ad three times to each person)
> I think it is important to remember that what DoubleClick, FocalLink,
> and GlobalTrack use cookies for is to deliver controllable advertising.
While that ability may be extremely desireable by advertising firms,
such as the ones already mentioned, this WG is not here to advance
advertising methods and technology.

This cross-domain sharing which essentially is a loophole of the
cookie technology, provides something to advertisers which they
dont have in other ad mediums.  By removing that functionality from
the draft, we are simple keeping the web in line with other advertising
mediums.

The question of whether the cross-domain privacy issues are ethical 
is to be decided elsewhere, not in the wg, IMHO.  Just because the 
technology is available to give advertisers what is, at the least,
controversial, doesnt mean we should.  

If anyone pins an ethical or moral 'duty' on this WG with regard to
this privacy issue, I beleive our duty is to take a conservative stance.
By keeping the information grabbing options available as written in the
specs closer to other advertising mediums, we are doing a 'good thing'.

If ad firms want to write additional tools to share that information
across domains, it is their perogative.  If new ground is to be
forged in the level of information gathering, it is better for it
to be done by the ad firms, than a loophole in the spec. 

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Josh Cohen				        Netscape Communications Corp.
Netscape Fire Department	                "My opinions, not Netscape's"
Server Engineering
josh@netscape.com                       http://home.netscape.com/people/josh/
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Received on Tuesday, 18 March 1997 16:41:58 EST

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