Every large news site is preaching about the NSA PRISM programme, and Obama’s apparent hypocrisy in monitoring his citizens.
What none of them mention explicitly is that they themselves use hundreds of technologies to track their readers both on their own sites, and as their readers move around the web.
Here are 6 images showing some of the tracking tecknologies on big news sites, plus 1 comparison chart of 68 technologies used across 10 large news sites. Note the ironic headlines on a few of these articles.
The Wall Street Journal
The WSJ says ‘US Collects Vast Data Trove’. Take a look at the 44 tracking technologies used on that page alone:
The Washington Post talks about ‘sweeping surveillance’ on a page with 19 tracking technologies.
Admittedly this is an old Cnet article, but take a look at their 20+ tracking technologies:
The Atlantic often publish articles on privacy. Virtually their entire front page is devoted to the NSA PRISM programme at present. They themselves use a whole host of tracking tools, both directly & via their many social plugins.
No hypocrisy between the headline & the tracking technologies used by Om Malik, but interesting nonetheless.
The New York Times
And double-irony from the NYT here. Take a look at the ad that’s automatically displayed. ‘2 friends are spying on you’, while the page itself has 17 tracking tools recording data about you.
Comparison of 68 Technologies Used by UK News Sites:
Finally, here’s a comparison I put together for an Econsultancy article (who use 13 technologies themselves) covering this:
The tools used for most of this were the excellent Ghostery, and Google Chrome’s Developer Tools.
Do share this with others if you have the chance. Outside of tech circles, I’m not sure many people realise quite how much of this is going on.