The Google Analytics team have broken a surprisingly long silence regarding the EU Cookie Law and Google Analytics (GA) and how GA will continue to function legally using cookies.
The solution that the UK ICO propose to conform with the EU legal requirement, resulted in a 90% drop in data gathered when they implemented it on the ICO website.
The following question was asked on the latest episode of the Google’s Web Analytics TV series, which is hosted by Google Analytics Evangelist Avinash Kaushik and Nick Mihailovski from the GA team.
The video opens with the following question “It’s now a legal requirement in the EU to get permission before sending cookies. Google Analytics, without accurate eCommerce tracking would be useless. Does Google have plans for a server-side working around, since PHP APIs for posting data already exist?”
Avinash’s reply is as follows: “This is a good question, Matt. Along with other companies, like Microsoft and Yahoo, and Omniture and Webtrends, the team at Google is working with the various entities in the EU to figure out what the implications are.
“Because some clarity is missing as to what applies in individual countries across the entire EU. At the moment that process has not concluded, but when the process is concluded we will post guidelines on the Analytics blog, analytics.blogspot.com. So stay tuned there.
“I did want to emphasise that the word ‘workaround’ is very sensitive in this scenario, so hopefully there are no ‘workarounds’. Google as well as all the other companies are going to follow the laws that are applicable in the individual countries.
“But as to what they are, and what the implications are, we’ll post them on our blog. As will our peer companies in the industry, so watch out for that.”
EU Cookie Law and Google Analytics are not good bed-fellows
I cannot see how the new the EU Cookie Law and Google Analytics will make good bed-follows. I also do not understand how the ICO will be able to enforce this law as millions of websites will be illegal in the UK following its full adoption in May 2012. Let us hope someone sees some sense and repeals the law as it is very disruptive for businesses during this tough economic period.
UPDATE: Follow the link to watch a video I have posted on the best advice for implementing a solution to the EU Cookie Law.