Did you know that if you enable the WordPress Stats module in Jetpack that all your stats, visits are being logged by a 3rd party called Quantcast?

I did some research on who they are. Can’t find much other than that they collect (supposedly) anonymous data from every site using WordPress Stats for the past few years. This data is publicly available and may be shared with advertisers. Ew!

What’s more, the people from Automattic (WordPress) are being vague about their intentions claiming the JS code and stats are required for “awesome future features and functions”, “it’s not optional and required for us” (Who is us specifically? And why do you need this data?). Whatever that means… I don’t see *ANY* benefit in sneakily following my sites. What good does it do me? Especially if that data is available for pretty much anyone without me even knowing I’m being tracked.

Apparently┬áthis fine code also installs tracking cookies on your computers and devices. I didn’t know it. But various people who stumbled on it this found cookies and keep removing them. But they reported they keep coming back at the same pace and eventually gave up.

I know Google does sort of the same with Google Analytics.. But at least there I know what’s what. My stuff is being used for advertisement and improved search results. Period.

This Quantcast code probably has been infesting my site for years and I only found out about it now, by accident, because I was pinging my site to see how fast it performs.

Thoughts?

Written by Arnan de Gans

The creator of the popular AdRotate for WordPress plugin. Created the OmniKassa plugin for WooCommerce. Original author or WP-Events for WordPress. Owner of AJdG Solutions and entrepreneur.

This article has 2 comments

  1. Baron

    We’ve purposely inserted the Quantcast tracking code into our site for years. If you’re going to sell ad space on your site one of the things clients want to know is your analytics. They want to see what kind of demographics your site is hitting, what your numbers are and if they should advertise at all. You can play all secret and not use Quantcast but being open and honest I think is a good policy for clients. Plus you don’t have to keep generating data and handing it to them manually. I’ve seen companies citing web stats that are over five years old from ratings companies that don’t exist anymore. That isn’t being honest.

  2. Arnan

    Sure, that makes sense. But why I was never told or allowed to opt-in/out from this is beyond me.
    I choose to use WordPress Stats. I didn’t choose quantcast nor was I ever told it is part of the deal.

    That’s what ticked me off.