WordPress has recently announced that it is currently considering a Consent API so that it’s users and admins have the benefit of standardized consent across various plug-ins.
“Cookies and Privacy”
A study conducted found that a majority of sites made it more difficult to deny consent of cookie use or data collection, than it did your you to approve it. Typically a pop-up window for consent may appear in a small box or in a banner along your screen. It is usually filled with text that briefly informs you that use of the site enables cookies to collect your information. Here is where sites tend to differ: Site A may not ask for consent. It may simply be a banner notifying you that cookies operate on their site and you need to be informed of this, no if’s, and’s, or but’s about it. This is frowned upon as it does not even bother to ask for permission. Still, that is better than providing false hope. Site B may provide a banner and text and also a selection for whether or not you give consent, however do not make the mistake of thinking no action means no consent. For Site B unless you specifically check “no” and follow any other prompts that may pop up to deny consent, Site B will simply take your lack of denial as approval. This is also frowned upon and according to the study, still a poor way of respecting people’s privacy, and in some cases the laws of the region in which they live in.
Finally there are sites that will honor what is selected by users when they click on the cookie consent options. The study finds these often few and far between which is why many are looking to API’s that can provide users an opportunity for real consent.
Consent API Development
Garrett Hyder, a web developer on the WordPress Core Team which develops WordPress wrote that, “A standard way for WordPress core, plugins, and themes to obtain consent from users should be established to provide a consistent and stable experience for administrators, developers, and users of all kinds.”
WordPress’s proposed API would not act as a blocker from 3rd party scripts but will allow easier interface with consent management plugins that are specific for sites and make a standard way for receiving consent. Once the plugin is approved it would be used and other third-party consent plugins would need to interface with it for proper use.
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