BlueKai Offers BT Opt-Out And Management Tool
Data auction marketplace BlueKai is offering a new tool that enables Web publishers to let consumers access and edit the marketing buckets they have been placed into, the company announced on Tuesday. The tool, available to publishers for free, also allows consumers to opt out of behavioral targeting, or being served ads based on sites visited or content accessed in the past.
BlueKai has offered its own version of the tool since last September, but the new "white label" registry for publishers will differ from the company's in one key respect: BlueKai's "global" registry allows users to view and access the marketing categories they have been placed into based on data collected by a host of publishers. But the new publisher-specific version will reveal categories based on data collected by just that one publisher.
BlueKai CEO Omar Tawakol says the publisher-specific tool is narrower because many publishers don't want it to appear as if they are collecting more data than is the case.
But for consumers, the different data that is available on different versions of BlueKai's white-label registries could mean that people who care about managing the types of targeted ads they receive will have to revise settings at a host of different publishers' sites. Tawakol did say, however, that the publisher-specific registries might contain a link to BlueKai's global registry, so consumers could more easily manage their behavioral advertising preferences.
Tawakol said that so far one publisher has committed to using the white-label registry.
The new tool comes as ad companies are increasingly struggling to make behavioral targeting more transparent to consumers. In April, spam compliance company UnsubCentral unveiled a new service that enables marketers to allow Web users to manage the types of behaviorally targeted ads they receive.
That program, PreferenceCentral, will allow brands to collect information directly from consumers about whether they want targeted ads, and if so, for which types of products. The program is designed to work in conjunction with the upcoming behavioral targeting icons, which will carry metadata that includes information about the advertiser and links to the company.
In addition, Rep. Rick Boucher recently floated a draft of legislation that would require ad networks that track people and collect any information covered by the law for ad purposes to obtain users' consent. But the proposal says networks need only obtain opt-out consent if they provide prominent notice through an icon and also allow people to view and edit their profiles. Otherwise, the ad networks must obtain opt-in consent.