AdSense Interest-Based Ads Confusion

I’d like to say I understand this new “feature” from Google, but I can’t.

Like other webmasters, I received an email from Google recently regarding the new interest-based AdSense ads.  The emphasis was on changes I’d need to make in my privacy policy. 

Interest-based advertising will allow advertisers to show ads based on a user’s previous interactions with them, such as visits to advertiser website and also to reach users based on their interests (e.g. “sports enthusiast”).  To develop interest categories, we will recognize the types of web pages users visit throughout the Google content network.  As an example, if they visit a number of sports pages, we will add them to the “sports enthusiast” interest category.

As a result of this announcement, your privacy policy will now need to reflect the use of interest-based advertising.

On the surface, that doesn’t sound too bad – showing ads for stuff I’m interested in and from vendors who sell it seems like a pretty good idea.  However,  to determine which ads would be shown, they’ll be using yet another cookie to track your surfing habits

You should know by now that as soon as you connect to the internet, you have no privacy, and it’s pretty likely that somebody has already thought of this and is using the concept without telling you, so I’ll give Google credit for making the announcement, giving you and me the option to not participate. But, you (and I) have to jump thru the hoops to disable it. I’d much rather have them leave the default as we don’t have to do anything to stay out of this.

On my end, I’ve opted out of interest-based advertising so that the AdSense ads should continue to be related to the content of the page you’re reading.

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