‘This article is spying on you’

I’m glad to see this piece in the New York Times, addressing the slight hypocrisy of news orgs “exposing” the proliferation of tracking cookies and surveillance-powered advertising around the web. Carnegie Mellon’s Timothy Libert writes:

News sites often expose users to the same surveillance programs and data-collection companies they criticize. Even articles that explained how the N.S.A. was using Google cookies to “pinpoint targets for hacking” often included the exact same cookies revealed by Edward Snowden. Likewise, articles about Facebook and Cambridge Analytica often include Facebook tracking code, allowing Facebook to keep tabs on what people read.

He goes on to show some positive effects the recent implementation of GDPR has had on European consumers. (An ordeal so painful some US news websites have opted to simply block all European traffic).

It’s also well worth checking out the other pieces in the NYT’s Privacy Project.