Groups Will Allow Consumers to Opt Out of Data Tracking

In an effort to douse the heated discussion over online privacy, a number of tracking firms have formed the Open Data Partnership. The Partnership will allow consumers free access to review the info that’s been gathered about them and opt-out of being tracked all together. It launches in January and it’s expected that other tracking firms as well as large Internet companies like Yahoo will join once it’s live, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The issue of online privacy has got the FTC involved, with the Commission coming out in support of a “Do Not Track” option.

“The government has told us that we have to do better as an industry to be more transparent and give consumers more control. This is a huge step in that direction,” Scott Meyer, CEO of Better Advertising Project, which is leading the effort, told the Journal.

One organization that will be providing data for review is BlueKai, which says that it has data for more than 200 million users.

As Meyer says, this is a step. But the big problem these companies and any company that uses this information faces is the belief that gathering information about consumers is intrusive and, in some ways, downright wrong. To change policymaker and public opinion, these groups will somehow have to convince people that there are positives to letting companies collect data about consumers.

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