Cookies and you: An update

The EU cookie law goes into effect May 26. This is a great law because finally, all privacy issues will be permanently eradicated from the internet.

If there was ever an example of politicians really "getting" the internet, it would be this. The law requires that you list on your web site all of the cookies that get set by your web site, and the purpose of each cookie. Not even session cookies, or Javascript cookies that are never sent anywhere but simply used as boolean "flags", are exempt; and this makes sense, because cookies of this nature are infamous in hacker circles for their unparalleled ability to steal your credit card, read your email, and sleep with your wife. The law also requires you to get "opt in" permission from a visitor before any cookies can be set. Redirecting every visitor to a page with this information and the ability to opt in to cookies is a great solution, because every additional step between a visitor and a conversion increases revenue by 10x, according to a study from AreYouFreakingKiddingMe, LLC.

We just updated our privacy policy to list all of the cookies that may get set by your site if you have Clicky installed on it, in case you need it. If this law applies to your web site, we're sorry, but you can either explain all of this to your visitors and let them opt in, or follow the instructions here to disable cookies.

We've had the option to disable cookies in tracking for a while, however that was created back when we only had one cookie ("the" tracking cookie). Since then we have added several more, whose purpose is to make the code more efficient and save resources on our end from deactivated/non-paying site (these being the session/boolean cookies mentioned above). Up until now, disabling cookies had no effect on these extra cookies. Because they were never sent to us, we didn't think it would matter. And it shouldn't. But now it does. Our tracking code has been updated so all cookies will be disabled now when this option is set (except one, but that will only be set for sites that are no longer using Clicky but still have the code installed, which is against our terms of service).

UPDATE: A user pointed out that Cloudflare still sets a cookie. We use them for our CDN (static.getclicky.com). Their wiki says that cookies cannot be disabled. We have reached out to them for their plans regarding this law and will update you when we know more.

UPDATE: Interestingly, the BBC, one of the biggest UK web sites, specifically states on their new cookie settings page that they embed third party items such as Youtube and Flickr that set cookies and that these are beyond their control so those cookies will still be set no matter how they decide about cookies served directly by BBC. Does this mean that sites embedding third party content or services, such as Clicky, are exempt from having to worry about these kinds of cookies? Who knows, but it's interesting.
17 comments |   May 22 2012 3:47pm





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