Google is revising its targeted online advertising plans after privacy advocates refused, in a bid to give marketers less granular information about internet users than the tech giant’s original proposal.
The Alphabet unit said its proposed new system, Topics, would allow web advertisers to target broad categories of users – those interested in “fitness” or “travel”, for example – instead group them into thousands of cohorts with similar navigation. stories.
The company’s Chrome browser will distill a shortlist of interests based on a user’s recent browsing history, the company said. Users will be able to see and delete the interests that the browser assigns to them or completely deactivate the system.
The proposal is a consequence of Google’s plan to phase out a user tracking technology called third-party cookies in 2023. Millions of marketers currently rely on third-party cookies, unique snippets of code to identify individual browsers , to target online advertisements based on users’ specific browsing histories. This practice has led to complaints from activists and privacy regulators in Europe and the United States.
Google’s plan to develop an alternative to cookies has been closely watched due to the search giant’s enormous power over the digital advertising economy.
Its Chrome browser accounts for roughly two-thirds of the global market, while its ad tech business leverages the dominant tool at every link in the chain between online publishers and advertisers, giving it unparalleled influence over how revenue is generated from digital content.