State Of GDPR In 2021: Cookie Consent For Designers And Developers

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Danny Bluestone is the CEO of Cyber-Duck, an agency that delivers UX-driven digital transformation for brands like the Bank of England, The Commonwealth, … More about Danny ↬

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Quick summary ↬ As digital practitioners, GDPR has impacted every facet of our professional and personal lives. Whether you’re addicted to Instagram, message your family on WhatsApp, buy products from Etsy or Google information, no one has escaped the rules that were introduced in 2018.

, and in the US for its search advertising services, is looking to remove third-party cookies from Chrome. (Firefox and Safari already block these cookies by default.)

The complainants say that this change will further concentrate advertising revenue in Google’s hands. Google’s response? The advertising industry needs to make ‘major changes’ as it shifts to a ‘web without third-party cookies’.

Google’s not alone. In October 2020, four French digital advertising lobbies filed an antitrust suit against Apple’s forthcoming iOS privacy change, a feature it’s called App Tracking Transparency (ATT).

ATT, coming in an early-spring 2021 release of iOS 14, shifts app users from an opt-out to an opt-in ad-tracking model. With ATT, every app must get your permission to share your Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA), which enables third-party ad tracking across multiple sites and channels.

The complainants say that by restricting apps’ ad revenue, developers may have to boost app subscriptions and in-app purchases or switch to Apple’s targeted ad platform — all of which will funnel ad spend away from them and towards Cupertino.

Critics including Facebook have slammed the change, saying it’ll hit small businesses who rely on microtargeted ads. Apple has defended the move and praised the EU’s defence of citizens’ data privacy.

To sum up:

  • Implied consent doesn’t equal consent under GDPR, according to the EU.
  • We should also avoid cookie walls
  • Google and Apple are moving against third-party cookies — which some say exploits their dominant market position.

So what does that mean for us, as designers and developers? First, let’s take a look at why this is important.

More after jump! Continue reading below ↓