Microsoft IE's forced 'Do Not Track' about face

Last week, Microsoft promised IE 10 would turn on Do Not Track by default. This week, the official spec says just the opposite.

Microsoft's statement about engaging Do Not Track by default was seen as a slap at Google (Wired) but also upset online advertising companies. Many consumers and privacy advocates did cheer the decision, however. But the release of the proposed draft specification clearly states DNT must not be engaged by default.

If Microsoft does decide to ship IE 10 with DNT turned on by default, companies can ignore that setting and track to their heart's content, because Microsoft didn't follow the specifications. Now the focus is on the Digital Advertising Alliance, credited with forcing the changes in the draft specification after Microsoft made their announcement.

We lose again

Hmm, I smell a touch of politics.

Ixion on

Interests of consumers ? They went years ago in the interests of shareholders.

forkieboy on

Microsoft were right, defaulting to on, was representative of how the common user expects their privacy to be treated. The more experienced would know that's a delusional viewpoint, but it is probably the right one.

Chris Beach on

Quote: Well, that didn’t take long. No, it didn't.

undervillain on


I guess I'll stick with Firefox, with DNT, Adblock+ and Ghostery which actively rips out the javascript used by trackers.

rick_pri on

Maybe Microsoft should just ship IE with AdBlock turned on by default.

boohoo123 on

I say have your browser ask the first time it is run after the feature is added if you want to be tracked.

Bernd on

Microsoft can comply with the standards by doing a first run configuration that asks them if they want to opt-in to Do Not Track.

the_tech_mule on


Microsoft makes a WEB browser?! Thanks for the warning.

Buzz Coastin on

People who are making their money by tracking have a few years to get a real job.

JohnDoey on

Raise your hand if you thought the new Do Not Track specification would substantially improve online privacy. Really? Both of you?

For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

Now read this:

Developer declares 'I am done with the Freemium Business Model'

Khan Academy offers JavaScript as their first computer language

Study says Facebook profile can predict job performance

ITWorld DealPost: The best in tech deals and discounts.
Shop Tech Products at Amazon