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White House quietly exempts YouTube from federal Web privacy rules

The new website for Obama's White House is already drawing attention from privacy activists and tech bloggers. While the initial focus has been on site's policies relating to search engine robots, a far more interesting tidbid has so far escaped the public eye: the White House has quietly exempted YouTube from strict rules regulating to the use of cookies on federal agency websites...

The Obama White House website is only two days old, and so it is certainly possible that the team simply hasn't gotten around to deploying a more privacy preserving system for YouTube video embeds. Protecting users who do not click play from automatically receiving a cookie is certainly possible -- the Electronic Frontier Foundation in 2008 released a wrapper script for YouTube videos that provided this very feature. Let us hope that the Obama team deploys such a technology in due course.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

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