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BakedCatboy @lemmy.ml
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Comments 142
"Privacy-Preserving" Attribution: Mozilla Disappoints Us Yet Again
  • It's better because PPA isn't about targeting ads at all. It doesn't share any browsing history, topics, or any information for ad targeting to advertisers at all. What it does do is provide a way for a website to tell your browser which ads are relevant to an action you take - for example on a checkout confirmation screen the site may tell your browser "here's a list of ad IDs for the shop you just bought from". Your browser then checks if it's seen any of those ads, checking completely using local data that doesn't leave the browser, then to an aggregator it reports which ads possibly led to your purchase. The aggregator increments a counter for each ad in its database and relays the totals to the advertiser. There are no unique identifiers or any information about your habits or interests involved.

    When I initially heard about PPA I also thought it was related to FLoC / topics, but it has nothing to do with ad targeting or sharing information about habits / interests, it's just a way to tell advertisers "Ad XYZ was effective and led to a sign up/purchase" without revealing who saw the ad or any personal information about them, just the total number of people.

  • Firefox added ad tracking and has already turned it on without asking you
  • Not when the conversation tracking is done 100% locally. The only thing sent from the browser is telling a server to increment a counter - a single bit of data. It's hardly any different than a visitor counter that "tracks" how many visitors a site got, which I think would really be a stretch if you claimed that visitor counters were tracking individual users.

    I'm not sure if you actually read the details, but this system enables sites to tell your browser which ad IDs are related to an action you're doing (for example on a check out page the site will give your browser a list of ad IDs for the shop) so that conversion tracking can be done locally in your browser. Then, without needing to share any personal information, your browser can tell an aggregator which (if any) of the ads you have previously seen, and that counter gets incremented.

    It's literally just a view counter for ads that only increments when the ad is successful, and because the correlation between the ad view and the checkout is done locally, the advertiser doesn't need to link your ad view with your checkout action - your browser did that correlation privately and locally.

    Sure no user needs this, but advertisers do everything in their power to track ad conversions and this gives them a mechanism to do that without giving them any information besides "this ad achieved it's goal 30 times", which is so much better than adtech tracking every page we visit so that they can have the information to deduce that for themselves.

  • Mozilla rolls out suspicious (opt-out) feature in firefox 128 to please advertisers - Privacy-Preserving Attribution
  • This is the second time I've seen PPA and reading the details also shifted my opinion somewhat - at first glance (and based on comments elsewhere) I thought this was FF implementing FLoC or some other Google-invented adtech which sends data to advertisers and enabling it by default.

    But from what it sounds like, this is really advertisers/websites providing the information to your browser so it can do conversion tracking locally then anonymously reporting the resulting conversions to an aggregator. Only the information that a conversion happened is transmitted so this is nothing like FLoC where your interests are shared, just the fact that X number of people viewed ad Y and subsequently performed action Z (such as making a purchase).

    Combined with the fact that this reduces advertisers need to rely on individual tracking in order to know whether ad Y led to action Z and this could potentially be an off-ramp / compromise to de-escalate advertisers use of tracking by providing them the key metrics they want to know about ad effectiveness through a system that doesn't make individual tracking easy.

    Now the pessimist in me totally believes that they will use this new system while still aggressively using every other method of tracking shotgun style, but if this proves reliable to them then I think it's plausible that advertisers will put up less of a fight when we add more privacy protection against traditional tracking. But that's assuming that advertisers feel that this new system provides everything they want and won't be at risk of being crippled. Otherwise yeah they'll totally cling to the old way of tracking ad conversions.

  • We're coming for you
  • I'm no expert but what I've heard is that there are lots of mosquitoes that don't bite which are more important for the food chain, but the ones that do bite make up a super small part so if we only eliminated the biting species there would still be plenty of other non-malaria-carrying mosquitoes for the food chain.

    At least that's the theory.

  • Netflix is starting to phase out its cheapest ad-free plan
  • Not really just Plex, in addition to powering 6 spinning drives (~50TB total), I also run Nextcloud, immich, Ollama (CPU inference, no GPU), home assistant, grocy, vaultwarden, jellyfin, sonarr, radarr, lidarr, prowlarr, flaresolverr, and overseerr. I run Plex on a separate Intel nuc10 (also included in that $10 of electricity) which has Intel QuickSync which allows me to transcode ~8 simultaneous 1080 streams to friends while leaving most of the rest of the CPU to everything else like running LLMs on the CPU (it's cheaper to run larger models on a slower CPU with lots of RAM compared to buying a GPU with a matching amount of vram).

    So yeah if you don't care about n+2 double redundant disks or sharing with more than like 5 people or hosting other apps or running AI while people are streaming then yeah you should totally get something less power hungry. Just the Intel nuc10 I use for Plex (but not media storage) has a TDP of 25W so just that would lower the electricity cost to like $2.50/mo.

    I mainly chose to just use the cost of my whole setup's electricity as an example because it didn't seem worth it to think about how to split up the idle wattage between services especially when it's gong to come in at way lower than the combined cost of all the major streaming services anyways, plus I don't want anyone accusing me of needing to underestimate to make my point - even if I overestimate, it's way cheaper.

  • Netflix is starting to phase out its cheapest ad-free plan
  • I remember when Netflix first introduced the ad supported plan and a lot of people were like this is how they make you pay extra to not see ads, and a lot of other people called that fud because it's an additional tier and the normal tier isn't impacted.

    At the time I was yelling that it was just the first step - create an ad free plan, wait for people to calm down, then slowly raise the prices until the ad supported plan costs as much as the ad free one used to. And there you have it, they charged extra to not see ads, just with extra steps.

    I quit Netflix back then and I'm so glad I did. $10/mo in electricity gets me every streaming service on my Plex, that's like a $100/mo value and I get to share it with all my friends.

  • [Fedora Silverblue] Why are these updates still shown to me?
  • The screenshot doesn't show any version change to signal - the version number is the same, so I was just answering why you might see an update like that since I thought that was part of your question.

  • [Fedora Silverblue] Why are these updates still shown to me?
  • Those might be flatpak "refreshes", which show up as "updating to the same version". As described by a flatpak maintainer, sometimes an app or runtime gets updated without changing the user-facing version number. I assume that's what you're seeing here.

  • Have you upgraded to WiFi 6 - 802.11.ax?
  • WiFi 6 has been out for like 3 years now so unless you're on a budget it might make sense to just go for WiFi 7. Of course you'll need client devices to be 6 or 7 to take advantage but that's doable on the cheap for laptops with replaceable M.2 WiFi cards. I upgraded both my laptops to WiFi 7 when I replaced my 3 year old u6 pro with a u7 pro, so I can now get around a gig to my nas. The only thing is that 6ghz barely goes through a wall for me so I need to be in the same room unless I want to fall back to 5ghz but it's still nice to have when the situation calls for it. Plus if your phone isn't WiFi 6 already your next one will probably be 6 or 7, so when friends are over with their new phones and laptops they get a nice low-contention experience on my WiFi.

    My main reason for staying on the bleeding edge is the airtime efficiency upgrades unique to WiFi 6 and 7 which makes a big difference in crowded apartment situations the more people move on from WiFi 5.

  • Label maker for home use
  • I have the dymo label maker 160, it doesn't have any DRM that I'm aware of (at least I used generic labels with no issue and it's easy to find compatible refills) and I like that it has a qwerty layout, since some annoyingly have an ABC layout which is a pain to use.

    My only gripe is that it doesn't have a ton of symbols though it has a decent selection, and even though the text can go small enough for like 3 lines it only lets you do 2 lines on top of each other. Also all non alphanumeric (apostrophes, parentheses, etc) are in the symbol menu instead of having dedicated keys but that's not terrible.

    It's also only ~$30 which is really reasonable, I've gotten a ton of use out of mine.

  • which would you choose
  • My gaming PC is sticking with 10 for the foreseeable future, it's my only windows machine and that's because it's a beatsaber and fusion360 machine and I don't want to be bothered with fixing something when I want to get a workout session in or need to urgently design a part.

    P.S. if anyone knows how to get fusion working in wine I'm all ears

  • It's so over
  • I don't remember actually but I checked the file metadata and I have the template in my downloads folder next to this which has an exif tag of 2 minutes later with gimp metadata so I'm pretty sure I must have made it, which makes it a bit more impressive since I probably just sent it to friends privately and didn't post it anywhere it could have been scraped for training.

  • It's so over
  • I'm curious if it could solve the traffic light and crosswalk ones, I would try but I'm out of free image uploads from asking it to explain memes to test its cultural knowledge.