So perhaps GDPR is still not settled. It appears that GDPR may be changing rules on the fly even though the final version has been published.
According to the BBC, yesterday, plans are underway to alter the way that permissions for cookies may be controlled.
Changing Rules on the fly
Instead of giving consent to cookies on every website they visit, users would be able to set general preferences.
The EC said the plans, which would also remove banners for non-intrusive cookies, would help to tackle such requests.
Since 2012, EU rules have required websites to tell users what cookies are being placed on their machine.
Typically, this meant a pop-up window seeking consent.
More user control
European Commission vice-president, Andrus Ansip, said it was now proposing simpler rules, “so that internet users do not have to click on a banner every time they visit a website”.
The idea is that people will be able to set their preferences in their browser application.
“This way, people will be more in control of their settings,” continued Mr Ansip.
In fact under the new proposal, banners could be scrapped for cookies that do not invade users’ privacy. These include those remembering shopping cart history or counting website hits.
Beginning of the end of website advertising?
However, the latest proposals could end up damaging online services and frustrate web users. According to James Waterworth a senior executive at a trade body representing many of the world’s biggest internet firms.
“The banners are certainly annoying. The question is whether they come up with something that’s better or worse,” said Waterworth, vice-president of the Computer and Communications Industry Association.
It was also pointed out that users would have to set their privacy levels in each and every browser used.
He warned the proposals could harm a range of companies, from Facebook through to newspapers, if many users opted against allowing all but the least intrusive cookies.
“If this is done wrong and it’s much harder to obtain permission, then it could have a serious impact on ad-funded services,”
For instance many blog site rely on advertising revenue as their source of income. If it wasn’t possible to obtain permission easily from regular readers, this revenue may well dry up.