I was reading my email this morning and I got curious and clicked on the Why this ad link and this is about where it led. I thought it might be interesting to other readers, so I decided to post it.
Why this ad
If you use Gmail you will notice there is a link that says Why this ad? at the bottom and on the side where the ads are. If you hover over it, this box will pop up. To find out why the ad was chosen or to manage what ads you get click on the Ads Preference Manager.
Door to Ad Preference Page
If you click on Ads Preference Manager on the first step it will take you to this page. You may have to sign into your Google account. This is where you can block advertiser that were specific to the ads on that email. If you want to block advertisers that were not specific to that email, then click where it says click here
What Google has discovered about you
If you clicked on Ads on the Web on step 2 it will bring you to this page. This is the page that Google has collected on you from both 1st and 3rd party cookies as you view the web. If you want to find out more about how it works click on where the a is. If you want to control who sends ads to you click on b. If you want to opt out of all personalized ads click on c.
How Ad Preferences Work
If you clicked on A in step three, you will see this page. It tells you how ad preferences works.
Opting Out of Specific Advertisers
If you click on b in step 3 then this page will come up. This is the page where you can opt out of specific advertiser. This does take some work on the user’s part since in order to know which advertisers you want to opt out of you need to know what ads they send out. I use an extension call Ghostery on Google Chrome, which shows the advertisers for a specific page. It is also available for Fire Fox, I am not sure if it is available for other browsers like Safari or Internet Explorer. Finding the advertiser you want to block, may be a bit of trial and error.
Opting out of all Personalized Ads
If you click on c in step 3 you will see the option to add this extension. This will opt you out from all personalized ads via cookies. Read the information carefully, before deciding what you want to do, there are both good and bad things about having personalized ads.
Finally, these steps only work on ads that are produced under the Google Network or Adwords Ads and where the advertiser has agreed to be a part of the Self-Regulatory Program for Online Behavioral Advertising. This is only the tip of the iceberg on the issue of ads, privacy and Google. If you want to learn more I recommend clicking on the various links that say learn more on each page.