Monday, May 05, 2008

Internet Says: "Me Want Cookie"

This morning I read a great article about cookies in the wall street journal. L. gordon Corvitz makes some really interestng points in the article, and I feel it's worth commenting on.

The main intent of the article speaks about how there is a purpose for cookies in online, and since consumers aren't really 100 percent clear about how these cookies are being used, there is a fear about them, and the information we communicate online.

This is facinating to me. As the VP of Sales at a performance based ad network, cookies are an essential part of our business. They are necessary for our advertisers, and certainly necessary for our affiliates in the network. The longer a cookie term - the better the chance that an affiliate will gain a commission from the advertiser.

The article by Crovitz also mentions how some of the greatest minds working in the interactive space are addressing this issue today. They've proposed "cookie crumbs" or even smaller bits of information that me be communicated online while browsing. The issue here seems to be the amount of work involved in making cookie crumbs being a reality.

For now we'll have to focus on educating people about why cookies are necessary. If, as the consumer you've disabled your cookies because your concerned about privacy, you may not reap the benefits of advertising at it's best (no Geo targeted ads etc).

I can understand the concern about privacy, but I also think that people may not understand just how much information is availble about them outside of the internet, and that if they enable cookies, they will certainly have an enhanced browsing experience.

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