Is Google Limiting the Amount of Money They Stand to Make?

I read an interesting Ad Age article, “Google Offers Ad Opt-out Feature for Chrome Web Browser,” where Edmund Lee explains how Google’s Chrome web browser is now offering a special software for Internet users. This software enables Internet users to protect their privacy from online advertisers and data companies being able to track the user’s online activity.

This is no new news when it comes to the Mozilla Firefox and Microsoft’s Internet Explorer browsers, which have already implemented similar software to help “protect” Internet users from being tracked by companies. Edmund continues by discussing that Google’s “opt-out extension will retain the user’s preferences on which advertisers can and cannot track their behavior.” Most notably, this software is compatible with, which is the advertising and marketing industry’s self-regulatory program. This program was created to enable online consumers to gain more control over internet-based advertising (i.e. customized ads that are based on the user’s behavior online).

On Google’s site, the following is posted regarding this new development – “We recognize that some users are uncomfortable with the personalization of ads that they see on the web.” The site continues with a disclaimer that once this software of “Keep My Opt-Outs” is installed, user’s “experience of online ads will change: You may see the same ads repeatedly, or see ads that are less relevant to you. … It also may result in less profitable ads for your favorite websites.”

I found it ironic that Google’s web browser is moving forward with software that will restrict Google’s ability to gain insight into consumer’s online activity. Do you think that this “opt-out” software is something that will actually protect online consumers’ privacy?