Private Browsing, Better Browsing Bane of Affiliates

Private Browsing, Better Browsing Bane of Affiliates

LOS ANGELES — For adult website operators, “privacy” is one of today’s hottest topics, with lingering questions over the recently enacted General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and other initiatives aimed at protecting consumer’s data — but the notion of privacy also poses a direct threat to operator’s pocketbooks — not just to their legal status.

The use of browser-based privacy features is on the upswing, going beyond AdBlock-style add-ons that require user education and effort to implement, to now feature effective, integrated ad- and cookie blocking, often activated by default. In 2016, reports revealed half of all surfers used private browsing — a percentage that has doubtlessly climbed as the process has become easier and more accessible.

One example comes from a recent ad push encouraging surfers to adopt Firefox Focus as a way to prevent others from following their digital tracks — a perfect privacy feature for porn fans, but a horrible abomination if you make your living as an affiliate — where being credited for a sale is typically dependent on the data these privacy-oriented tools block.

“Take private browsing to the next level,” explains its publisher. “Firefox Focus gives you a dedicated privacy browser with tracking protection and content blocking. You can use Firefox Focus as a standalone browser [such as on Android devices] or as a content blocker for Safari on supported iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devices.”

That pretty much covers the gamut of popular platforms and while Focus is offered in addition to the standard Firefox mobile browser, it is sure to further chip away at the creditable sales flowing into affiliates’ coffers.

As if privacy wasn’t putting a big enough dent in revenues, some tech firms have also begun discouraging device use, in the name of health and safety — it seems “porn as a public health crisis” has expanded into “it’s all bad for you…”

This is bad news for businesses built on excess.

Here again, Firefox is at the forefront, with its backers encouraging users to get their “digital cleanse” to “fight toxic data buildup and eliminate anxiety over shared online info,” advising folks to adopt “a healthier and more in-control digital self.”

Poppycock. Porn sales are driven by the impulses of out-of-control digital selves, and affiliates can still profit from those sales — as long as their customers are not in “private” mode — and those folks are getting fewer in number all the time. All of which leaves affiliates struggling for solutions as they brace for further cuts due to mandatory age verification.

2018 is a challenging year for adult affiliates, but even as the playing field continues to evolve, it brings substantial opportunity and rewards to those who can master it.

Affiliates can learn more about today’s challenges and opportunities at XBIZ.net.