Flash Cookies - Local Shared Objects
There is lots of buzz going on over marketers using Flash's Local Shared Objects to store client side information, instead of traditional http cookies. This is a response to a report from Jupiter research stating that 38% of web users delete cookies on a regular basis. Though I would not be surprised if 35% of the people surveyed though that deleting cookies, meant eating them.
Jason Dowdell rings in with a quote from Jeremy Allaire on local shared objects.
Personally I think it sucks that advertisers are exploiting this, because people will start disabling this handy feature in flash. Believe me the folks that frequent slashdot are just looking for any reason to disable the flash player.
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Flash Cookies - Local Shared Objects was first published on March 31, 2005.
I understand that there will be new material on the Macromedia website soon on this subject. (I'm not yet sure of the address or specific content.)
I understand the Slashdot angle... my great fear is that a marketing writer happens to use a phrase that a Slashdot reader finds objectionable, and then things go nuts.
Recap: The Macromedia Flash Player can store domain-specific info locally, like browser cookies do. But the Player UI offers more control to each visitor: context-click to pull up the "Settings" dialog, and set either per-domain or global data restrictions.
(Aside to advertisers: You will likely get better reaction to browser cookies if you offer something explicit in return: site membership for personalization, etc.)