The Facts About Our Use of a Canvas Element in Our Recent R&D Test

A recent test, which was labeled in an article as “canvas fingerprinting,” caused concern among our users and people around the web. Our community is critically important to us, and we want to address your concerns.

We conducted this research project from February to mid-July. We’re constantly testing, and this was a preliminary initiative to evaluate alternatives to browser cookies. Many other companies are working on cookie alternatives, and we wanted to see if this approach worked before deciding whether or how we’d use it. The test was completed, the code has been disabled, and this data was never used for personalization or targeted advertising.

We use cookies to power our anonymous personalization and audience technology with non-personally-identifiable (PII) information. We don’t identify individuals. This is a core philosophy we take to heart and we honor user opt-out preferences any time we act on our data.

Being the largest provider of website tools on the Internet, we have responsibilities to our publishers and their visitors. We adhere to industry standards, and have an opt-out process that complies with our membership in the NAI and the DAA. We honored our opt-out policy during this test, and the data was only used for internal research.

We take your feedback very seriously and we understand your concern. Moving forward, we’re going to change the way we run tests, and we’ll provide you with more information about the tests before we activate them. We want you, our community, to be involved in the development of our tools, and our efforts to provide you with the best service for your site.

As always, we want to keep the communication lines open. We’re working on an open standard to give users transparency and control of online personalization. We’re looking for feedback and partners, so please subscribe to this email list to receive announcements in the coming weeks.