Website Updates, Privacy Goals, Reducing Cookies

  •  Monday, October 12, 2020 15:35

I’m making some big updates to the Blog Oklahoma Podcast website this week. My main goal is to reduce the amount of third party overhead the website is using. I also want to reduce the number of cookies and tracking elements being generated. This will increase privacy for you the visitor.

  1. I’ve removed DISQUS. I’ll no longer have a comment system here on the site. Any conversations we wish to have about an episode can happen elsewhere like our Subreddit, Mastodon, or Twitter. DISQUS wasn’t being used that much anyway.
     
  2. I’ve removed the Amazon ad block. The Amazon ads were not really generating much in the way of clicks.
     
  3. I’ve reduced the number of Google Ads to just one on the bottom of the website. Google Ads do generate an infinitesimal amount of funding, but I think eventually I’ll pull them off the site. We’ll see.
     
  4. I’ve removed the Twitter widget. This alone really reduced overhead. As a side note, the Reddit widget you see on the website is just pulling links from our subreddit’s XML feed. The code is local and doesn’t generate any tracking cookies.
     
  5. I’ve switched to using Plausible Analytics instead of Google Analytics. Plausible does have its limitations, but its privacy focused and open source. However, I’m only doing the trial for Plausible to see if it will work out. At the time of posting I have about 23 more days to test with. I would like to eventually pull all of Google off the website. This would increase privacy ten-fold, I think.
     

PS: I had an oatmeal raisin cookie from Subway for lunch. It wasn't bad but lacked something. Not sure what. What do you think?