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Am I FLoCed?

3rd party cookies are dead, so Google has been cooking up their replacement, Federated Learning of Cohorts or FLoC for short. Read more about FloC in this article from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF).

‘If you have been assigned a FLoC ID, it means that your browser has processed your browsing history and assigned you to a group of “a few thousand” similar users. The FLoC ID is the label for your behavioral group. This numeric label is not meaningful on its own. However, large advertisers (like Google) and websites (like… Google) will be able to analyze traffic from millions of users to figure out what the members of a particular FLoC have in common. Those actors may use your FLoC ID to infer your interests, demographics, or past behavior.’

As a marketer I find a few tracking metrics such as which web pages have the most visits and where (broadly speaking) people came from highly useful but I don’t want to get lost in the data and would rather focusing on making great content and working with clients. And as an advertiser It’s great to refine your spend to only show ads to people who will be most interested. But I don’t agree that we need pervasive tracking to achieve this.

Some of the best advertising that has influenced me, has been from places of trust such as podcasts I love or blog I read daily. If a company wants to get in front of more people they might be better to tie into content providers with the right audience rather than target individuals on any platform with hyper personalised automated ads. The problem is that social media platforms have inserted themselves in between us and the content and are now charging rent.