KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Twitter announced in a blog post Wednesday they will soon be “experimenting with a way to make ads” more useful. Translation: the social media giant will be paying close attention to what websites you visit.
In essence, Twitter isn’t doing anything that other websites don’t already do.
Let’s say a local florist wants to advertise a Valentine’s Day special on Twitter. They’d prefer to show their ad to flower enthusiasts who frequent their website or subscribe to their newsletter. To get the special offer to those people who are also on Twitter, the shop may share with us a scrambled, unreadable email address (a hash) or browser-related information (a browser cookie ID). We can then match that information to accounts in order to show them a Promoted Tweet with the Valentine’s Day deal. This is how most other companies handle this practice, and we don’t give advertisers any additional user information.
They are also giving users the option to turn it off.
If you’d like to turn off Twitter tracking:
- Log into Twitter and visit the account settings page.
- Uncheck the box that says “Tailor Twitter based on my recent website visits.”
- Uncheck the box that says “Tailor ads based on information shared by ad partners.”
- Click “save changes” at the bottom of the settings options.
You can read more from Twitter’s blog about the changes here.