IAB blasts Mozilla's cookie-blocking initiative

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New York—The Interactive Advertising Bureau is heavily criticizing the Mozilla Foundation's “Cookie Clearinghouse” plan as “cookie blocking by fiat” that would harm businesses and user choice. “It is a kangaroo cookie court, an arbitrary group determining who can do business with whom,” said Randall Rothenberg, IAB president-CEO, of Mozilla's plan that would manage or block third-party cookies on its Firefox browser. “These browser warriors are indifferent to the collateral damage they might create among the small publishers, retailers and other businesses that ... account for 3.7% of U.S. gross domestic product and define the Internet's richness and diversity.” The Mozilla initiative, developed in partnership with Stanford University, would not block so-called first-party cookies placed by sites that users log on to repeatedly. However, the plan would allow the blocking of third-party cookies typically placed in ads on first-party sites and used to track Internet user behavior. Apple Inc.'s Safari browser already uses this type of cookie blocking. Microsoft Corp.'s latest Internet Explorer browser turns on do-not-track by default.
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