In an age of hyper-partisanship, Americans increasingly get their news from sites that align with their political beliefs. But more separates those right and left-leaning sides of the web than their opposite ideologies. According to a new study, the right end of the fractured online news industry also tracks its audience far more aggressively than the left does.
In a study published last week, researchers from King’s College London, the privacy-focused browser firm Brave, and the research arm of Spanish telecom firm Telefonica compared the surveillance practices of left- and right-leaning news sites across the web. They found that sites classified as rightwing plant on average about 10 percent more cookies—bits of data that allow sites to identify the user and their previous browsing history—than their leftwing counterparts: 65 cookies for the average rightwing site versus 58 for the average leftwing one.