The Department of Commerce’s Internet Policy Task Force recently initiated a comprehensive review of the nexus between privacy and innovation in the Internet economy, seeking public comment from all Internet stakeholders. The Department intends to analyze the comments received and then issue a report that will contribute to the Administration’s domestic policy and international engagement in the area of Internet commerce.
The NAI yesterday filed comments with the Department addressing specific questions posed in its Notice of Inquiry as applied in the context of online behavioral advertising. Our comments discuss how the free flow of data has been critical to innovation on the Internet by enabling advertising models that permit increasingly diverse content and services to be offered to consumers free of charge. We then address some of the Department’s questions with respect to the U.S. privacy framework going forward, with particular emphasis on the importance of self-regulation. Finally, we describe privacy-enhancing technologies that have recently been developed by the NAI and its member companies to offer consumers greater transparency and choice with respect to the collection and use of data for online advertising, including the development of technical specifications for in-ad notice, ad preference managers developed by various NAI member companies, and the NAI’s durable opt-out protector.
The NAI’s comments can be found here. We look forward to working with the Department and other policymakers in addressing these important issues.
–Meredith Halama, NAI Assistant General Counsel, Policy