Part of the Privacy Sandbox was the Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoc), but since it was announced in 2021 as an alternative to cookies, it caused a lot of controversy, as grouping people by “cohorts”, where they shared interests, was not well seen. So, in January 2022, Google accepted the rejection of FLoc and announced Google Topics.
This new alternative seems much friendlier for advertisers and for Internet users, as it focuses on topics of relevance to people during the last 30 days. For a time, the relevant topics for each user will be used, for example cycling or Latin American cinema, and their experience will be focused on the topics of interest to them. In addition, people will have control over which topics they want to share, which ones not, or turn off Google Topics altogether.
Most importantly, it doesn't compromise sensitive information and topics are removed every three weeks. Its difference with FLoc is the transparency about what information is being used, the control over it by users and that the behavior of people is not generalized, therefore it is functional both for personalization and for advertisers.
The story between Google and cookies still has a long way to go, although it is getting closer to an ending. However, it’s important to keep track of these changes, since the future of the next marketing practices and a more responsible way of using information depend on it. The Internet users should remain active in this communication and demand control of their private information.