Issue 25: Possible exemption for research purposes covered by conditions for outsourcing and issue 34: Exemption for aggregated data

Submissions for W3C on behalf of Research Industry
Issue URL:
Section number in the FPWD:
Contributors to this text: (Draft) Kathy Joe (ESOMAR), (Edit) Alexandros Deliyannis in consultation with CASRO (Council of American Research Organisations)

Issue 25: Possible exemption for research purposes covered by conditions for outsourcing and issue 34: Exemption for aggregated data
An exemption for research purposes is not required as this is covered under conditions for outsourcing where user's consent is required for cross-site tracking or issue 34, exemption for aggregated data.

Description: The first party site has an agreement with a research company to serve an invitation to a user as a result of something they have done on the site, eg visited a travel section. The user has a first party relationship with the site.

Suggestion: Site users' individualised data can be collected with permission, the use of the data cannot be applied in an interactive way and no products or services are offered to respondents on the basis of their individual responses. The researcher and sponsor use the information gathered strictly for research purposes. Researchers aggregate research data and when reported, the data is de-identified and cannot be linked to a specific user, computer or device. Any disclosures of identifiable research data must be used strictly for research purposes and with respondent consent.

If the respondent consents to be tracked, the data that is shared with the client is anonymised and aggregated in such a way that no discernable patterns can be attributed to a single individual.

Online surveys are usually interactive with the site user indicating their consent (YES) and not filling them (or pressing the "no" button) is equivalent to NO (meaningful interaction). Ie explicit yes or no.

Example and use cases: A site user is browsing a site. If they fulfil certain criteria, they may be served a pop up invitation which they may choose to click through to accept in which case the research company would then become the first party. The research company may ask to be granted an exception, site-specific or cross-site. The data collected would be aggregated in the results as the research company is not interested in identifying that particular person.

Opt back in for panel members who have DNT - see 4.3.1: how should a tracking reference interact with user over-rides of the tracking compliance, Issue 27: How should the "opt-back in"mechanism be designed?
Description: Research panel member eg Suppress DNT because there is a contractual agreement with the user (ie users have a pre-existing agreement to be tracked)
Panel Members are individual users that have expressed the desire to be part of a research study and/or group as part of a behavioral tracking research program which would need to over-ride the DNT standard. We introduce this to distinguish it from a site-specific exemption which may represent a desire/preference whereas a panel member relationship represents a contractual obligation with the research organization that may cover different domains..

Let me know if you have any questions

Kathy Joe
Professional Standards & Public Affairs Director

Eurocenter 2, 11th floor
Barbara Strozzilaan 384
1083 HN Amsterdam
The Netherlands
Tel: +31 20 664 2141
Fax: +31 20 664 2922<>

ESOMAR is the essential organisation for encouraging, advancing and elevating market research worldwide.

This e-mail message including any attachment(s) is intended for the addressee only and may be confidential. If you are not the intended addressee, we request that you notify us immediately and delete this e-mail including any attachment(s), without copying, forwarding, disclosing or using this (these) in any other way.

ESOMAR does not guarantee that the contents of this e-mail message are transferred correctly, in time and in full. Moreover, ESOMAR does not guarantee that this e-mail message is free of the interception or manipulation by third parties. ESOMAR will under no circumstances be liable for any direct or indirect damages relating to the communication of this e-mail message or any of its attachments.

All services carried out by ESOMAR are subject our Terms and Conditions which can be found on our website<>.

Received on Monday, 6 February 2012 16:56:15 UTC