Jonathan Mayer is the man who turned off third-party cookies in upcoming versions of Firefox. (Cookies are the little bits of code that web sites drop onto your browser as you surf so that advertisers can target you with ads.)
He just told AdExchanger that he no longer cares what advertisers think about privacy and cookies, because they’ve lost that debate.
His Twitter account has been a brutal stream of sarcasm about advertisers who want a solution that leaves cookies in place.
Mayer’s move has angered advertisers, who were in the midst of negotiations for an industry-wide standard on tracking cookies when it happened. Advertisers want the cookies left on by default, with an option for users to turn them off if they want more privacy. The Firefox move keeps them off by default, and users must choose to turn them on.
Safari and Microsoft have similar no-cookies policies. Without Firefox, virtually all the major browsers would come in default anti-tracking positions — and that’s a huge threat to advertisers whose ads pay for much of the web we see every day.
Mayer told AdExchanger he doesn’t care. He says advertisers have lost the negotiations already:
The leverage used to be on the advertising industry’s side, but it has become clear by virtue of the technologies at the browsers’ disposal that the leverage is now on the consumer’s side.
The advertising side would be expected to reevaluate their hardline “We’re not going to negotiate” stance and rethink their strategy. Unfortunately, that hasn’t happened. So I’m not too optimistic on negotiated terms for Do Not Track, but I’m increasingly optimistic that by virtue of the browsers’ efforts, consumers will get the choices they want.
His Twitter has been equally dismissive:
The DAA is the Digital Advertising Alliance, which wants cookies on by default: