W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-tracking@w3.org > June 2012

Re: ISSUE-4 and clarity regarding browser defaults

From: Bjoern Hoehrmann <derhoermi@gmx.net>
Date: Tue, 05 Jun 2012 02:41:06 +0200
To: "Roy T. Fielding" <fielding@gbiv.com>
Cc: "public-tracking@w3.org protection wg" <public-tracking@w3.org>
Message-ID: <l1hqs71o0bt2t3ch4jcmn40lfa5pp4s9hg@hive.bjoern.hoehrmann.de>
* Roy T. Fielding wrote:
>I have added text based on Aleecia's original proposal that was
>reviewed in Santa Clara (IIRC), slightly modified to reflect the
>three alternatives (unset, on, off) we agreed upon and to fit
>within the determining/expressing/multiple-mechanisms order of
>the current spec.
>
>http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-tracking-commit/2012Jun/0000.html

Aleecia's text required user agents to offer DNT:1 and DNT:0 to users,
while your text requires user agents to offer DNT:1 and no header. I am
not aware the Working Group has decided that offering DNT:0 would be
optional. I think making "DNT enabled but off" optional requires a spe-
cific decision that can't be read into decisions regarding ISSUE-4.

I think it is misleading to say that "A user agent MUST have a default
tracking preference of unset (not enabled)" which you can easily quote
out of context as I am doing here, omitting the following "unless" part.

Similarily, the following text "For example, use of a general-purpose
browser would not imply a tracking preference when invoked normally as
SuperFred..." could be read to mean that GNU IceCat cannot use `DNT:1`
by default, even though, as far as I can tell, it is a general-purpose
browser, presumably known to implement "privacy" features that go above
and beyond what mainstream browsers do, simply because of its name. I
do not think the Working Group has decided that, in effect, IceCat can't
use DNT:1 by default. "Iron" would be a similar example, a fork of a
general-purpose browser, as far as I can tell anyway, but quite assumed
to have additional privacy features compared to what it is forked from.

(Given that the Working Group has decided that "user experience" is out
of scope, I am afraid I can't make suggestions how to improve the text.)

I also note that "default" assumes the absence of an explicit prompt...
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Received on Tuesday, 5 June 2012 00:41:32 UTC

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