I do not claim to understand much about cookies (the sales/leads/clicks tracking and return-day tracking types) and IE 6.0 and P3P and Compact Policy and so on, but from what I read here and there, only sites that display their merchants in a frame need to worry about IE 6.0.
In summary, the IE 6.0 at its default setting only restricts/blocks the following types of cookies:
1) 3rd party cookies with no Compact Policy
2) 1st/3rd party cookies that use personally identifiable info without the user's implicit consent
For sites that link directly to other sites, then only so-called "1st party cookies" would be loaded onto the user's PC when he/she visits the sites from your links.
Now for sites that link to other sites in a frame, because the viewer's browser address bar will still be showing the URL of the referrer, rather than the referred, so any cookies originating from the referred site will become 3rd party.
It gets a bit interesting when the links are affiliate links, e.g. http://www.qksrv.net/click-xxxxx-xxxxx
If the above is really a cookie (who knows for sure how CJ and more importantly, how IE 6.0 define them accordingly), then is it a 1st or 3rd party cookie the moment right after someone clicks on the link?
It is probably a cookie, as some info needs to be stored on the user's system for the tracking of return-days, I suppose. But it is also a URL that redirects to a merchant site, so it may not be a 3rd party cookie afterall.
In any case
, it doesn't really matter because CJ, AffiliateWindow (they told me) and Performics (I think they told me as well) and possibly other networks too, have claimed to be P3P compliant, meaning they have a Compact Policy. So their cookies should pass the requirement of IE 6.0 at the default setting, and would not be blocked/restricted. And based on my testing, I am glad to report no such cookies have ever been blocked on the default setting.
However, I also mentioned on another thread that some merchant's cookies are still being blocked for framed sites,
The question now is whether such cookies are essential cookies that may affect tracking of sales/leads/clicks or return-day settings. It seems to me it's rather redundant for the merchant to put forward any more cookies in addition to the ad network
's own. So I am now of the opinion that these 3rd party cookies are just for the merchant's own tracking purposes.
For e.g. anyone can add such ?pid=xxx&aid=xxx to the back of their URLs and can read from their raw log files later that such clickthrus will be uniquely identified as a referrer with so and so pid and aid. So the merchants must have coded such referrer info to their links to be translated into the qksrv or other networks' standard tracking codes.
BTW, for merchants who have a Compact Policy, then again, no cookies will be blocked for framed sites.
Now for the 2nd part of the IE 6.0 requirement, I don't really know but I hazard a guess that it is probably referring to some tracking cookies used to gather visitor's info, maybe like the ?pid=xxx&aid=xxx I mentioned above. But for affiliate sites concerned with the tracking of sales and return-days, I would think these are not so important.
But if we raise the Privacy setting on IE 6.0 to higher levels, then even 1st party cookies with a Compact Policy may be blocked. Again, I don't think this presents any more dangers to what already is readily available on the market anyway e.g. Cookie Pal and maybe even older versions of IE, that may be set to block all cookies.
A final point to add, there are also networks like LinkShare and Be Free that claimed to be P3P compliant, but have pushed the responsibility to their merchants' individual compliance/non-compliance to determine if tracking will be affected by framed sites on IE 6.0. Something to do with their mile-long tracking codes, which may or may not be a tracking code afterall. Go figure.
Just what I observed and read and tested on in the past couple of months, if anyone has any info that contradicts what I said, or anything that may shed more light on the subject, please feel free to share, thank you. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif[/img]
[ 02-19-2002: Message edited by: TianTian ]