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Friday, 15 February 2008

The Open Internet Exchange

According to the FT:

"The new marketplace, called the Open Internet Exchange uses anonymous information about internet users’ browsing activity to serve up more relevant adverts.The system tracks recent sites visited by the user and any keywords they have entered to search engines to identify their interests, but replaces their identifying details with a random number that cannot be traced back.“We cannot know who you are or where you’ve been,” said Kent Ertugrul, chief executive.

The supplier of the technology, Phorm, says that consumers are given an opportunity to opt-out of having their browsing activity (anonymously) tracked.

The service is being promoted by participating ISPs - currently BT and Carphone Warehouse at Webwise.com: as their "response to consumers’ growing concerns and frustrations with the Internet. Webwise can help protect you from fraudulent “phishing” websites that may put your financial and personal data at risk. It also helps reduce the number of irrelevant, untargeted ads you see."

That site it is offering people the opportunity to opt-in as well as opt-out.

Question is will it be defaulted to "opt-in" when users sign up or next fire-up their internet connection?

And what will this mean in terms of advertising revenue?
"...analysts at Investec estimated that BT and Carphone Warehouse could see revenue benefits of £85m and £65m respectively.

The high margin nature of online advertising revenues meant this could benefit their 2010 earnings by about 1.3 per cent and 10 per cent respectively, Investec said."
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