I am highly disappointed by the trojan-style of WordPress to instal tracking software on self-hosted websites.
WordPress provides a really nice plugin named Jetpack; it provides al kinds of useful tools for the owners of a self-hosted WordPress blog. But the way to pay for this functionality is to secretly track visitors and sell that data to advertising companies. This is a sharp contrast with the open and free spirit of WordPress that millions have come to love. The Software is also used on WordPress.com were the company hosts hundreds and thousands of blogs for people for free. This is their own domain where I can understand such a practice. But to sneak third-party tracking software onto the websites of people who made a decision to host their own software seems very wrong to me.
The tracking company behind WordPress and this plugin is Quantcast.
In their own words:
“Quantcast measures and organizes the world’s audiences in real-time so advertisers can buy, sell and connect with the people who matter most to them. Used by the top 10 media agencies, the world’s largest brands and more than half of the top advertising supported publishers, Quantcast connects the planning, buying, and media fulfillment processes, delivering the marketplace’s most consistent and accountable audiences.”
I started a topic on the WordPress.org forum about this and hopefully it will spark a discussion. Join in there or leave your comments below:
UPDATE: after a serious talk with myself I decided to delete the Jetpack plugin from this blog. I still have PHP-stats to see no-one is visiting 😉