Good news for all the Netizens out there. At least 60 companies, listing brand names like Subway, Sprint, and the NFL are joining forces to help each other follow the users around online.
To be more clear, Adobe, a company which has gained much prominence for Photoshop and PDF files, regarded that the new Device Co-op initiative it would be organizing, would definitely aid companies, offering them more personalized experiences and make ads less annoying by filtering out products and services, they have bought already or would never buy. Under this initiative, Adobe can actually state users that he/she is the same person, whether on a home PC, a work laptop, a phone, and a tablet by analyzing past sign-ins with member companies.
This initiative has emerged with heightened privacy sensitivities after reports came regarding that Facebook scandal, in lieu of the political consulting firm, Cambridge Analytica, which harvested data on millions of Facebook users to influence elections. Facebook also has been criticized for collecting call and text logs from phones backed by Google’s Android system.
So, this initiative by Adobe underlines the role data plays in helping companies to make money. Of course, many of the initial uses are for better ad targeting.
In a recent digital marketing conference, hosted at Las Vegas, Adobe executives said they believed their initiative offered strong privacy safeguards and weren’t worried about a backlash in light of the Facebook scandal.
Here, Adobe executive Amit Ahuja added that “With this stuff coming out now around Cambridge Analytica and Facebook, the bar has to be so high in terms of privacy”.
More on this Adobe initiative:
Adobe has confirmed on the part that no personal data is being exchanged among participating companies, which also include Allstate, Lenovo, Intel, Barnes & Noble, Subaru, and the Food Network. Further, it added that the program links about 300 million consumers across nearly 2 billion devices in the U.S. and Canada.
For instance, this program would let Sprint know that Bob is already a customer when he visits from a new device. Bob wouldn’t get a promotion to switch from another carrier but might get instead a phone upgrade offer. Or, if Mary has declared herself a Giants fan on the NFL’s app, she might see ads with Giants banners when visiting NFL.com from a laptop for the first time.
Adobe regarded that it would honor opt-out requests for all participating companies and for all devices at once. It’s more typical for such setups to require people do so one by one. All companies in the initiative are listed on Adobe’s website, and this would be a break from some companies’ practice of referring only to unspecified partners.
To this, Ahuja added that “We’re doing everything we can not letting brands hide themselves”.
However, Adobe assumes the users’ consent, in taking an opt-out approach, and this is common in the industry. This also places the burden on consumers to learn about this initiative and to figure out how they can opt out of it.