But what’s your definition of tracking? There seems a danger in having a wide definition that includes all analytics - if the analytics is tracking people across sites then that’s one thing but what if it’s scoped to a single site (as say we used to do with log analysers)?
September 14th, 2018
In meetings, in Slack, in emails, and any other discussions, I’m making a conscious effort to use the word “tracking” instead of “analytics.”
A small Lakoffian intervention to remind myself of what these scripts mean for the user.
Well, here’s the funny thing—in all the discussions I’ve been in, the “analytics” under discussion are cross-site. By deliberately using the word “tracking” for this, I hope to point people to the option of using log analysers.
I share your tracking concerns but afraid we’ll end up throwing the ‘baby out with the bath water’ - some of the ad/tracker blockers class New Relic, Pingdom etc. as trackers rather than tools for helping understand the visitors experience
Let me get this right: analytics - coming up with insights. tracking - gathering user data. ?
Also more accurate in the all too common case when the data is not analyzed by anyone.
you can’t just whitelist some 3rd party trackers only because you want the data at work. that’s exactly what adtech folks are saying too.
Indeed. Another example: for a while, I was doing RUM with Speed Curve …but because it required a client-side to work, I ditched it. It’s tracking. Same goes for any client-side script whether it’s New Relic, Pingdom, or Advertising.
Then what do you measure in the logs if all the data is about computers? Is there even a point in knowing what computers do if we want to make better (as in faster) experiences for people, not their computers?
If we want to measure user experience then we have to do it client side, synthetic testing doesn’t capture variation in user experiences. Sites could build their own RUM solutions but data can be pretty horrible - ElasticSearch have an open source product that might get there
I disagree with your first sentence.
Burning the village isn’t the only way to save it. :-)
I figured you might… in my experience thing that gets people to take performance more seriously is data showing what visitors’ experience is really like heads off “my site is special, my visitors are different, everyone has 4G, no-one buys on android etc.” type of objections
Agreed, we fixed up everything that can be detected with page view analysis years ago, tracking ease of use of forms, optimising single page applications, all requires something client side..
Been talking about framing with my new team this week. Don’t think of an elephant :)
Nice. Pretty sure the web would be different if instead of the cute “cookie” we had called them “trackers”.