Saul Hansell reports on Joseph Turow’s proposal for awareness of behavioral targeting:
I’m coming to the conclusion that each advertisement on a page has to speak for itself. That’s implicit in the approach Google is taking for its new behavioral targeting system. It puts the phrase “Ads by Google” on all its advertisements. Click that link and you’ll get some limited information about Google’s targeting system and an ability to adjust some of the interests that Google is tracking.
But Google’s approach is presented in a way that glosses over what they are doing and discourages people from reading the disclosure and exercising control, says Joseph Turow, a marketing professor at the Annenberg School for Communication of the University of Pennsylvania.
Mr. Turow has developed a plan that is simpler and more comprehensive: Put an icon on each ad that signifies that the ad collects or uses information about users. If you click the icon, you will go to what he calls a “privacy dashboard” that will let you understand exactly what information was used to choose that ad for you. And you’ll have the opportunity to edit the information or opt out of having any targeting done at all.