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DoubleClick Extends Public Awareness Campaign

Long under the microscope for its privacy practices, DoubleClick took another step toward reforming its image by extending its privacy awareness campaign to double the number of impressions previously planned.

The company had originally announced plans to serve 50 million impressions, and now will increase that to 100 million. In its press release about the initiative, DoubleClick (DCLK) didn't explain why it was upping the number of impressions, and company officials couldn't immediately be reached for comment.

The banner, which links to DoubleClick's privacychoices.org Web site, is part of the ad company's effort to combat concerns raised by privacy advocates, by providing information about its own privacy practices, and those of other Web sites and ad networks. The site also informs consumers how to opt out of the DoubleClick cookie, which the company uses to track consumers' behavior on the Web.

"This has been an enormously successful campaign, which has already driven 150,000 unique visitors to the privacychoices.org site in two months," said Kevin Ryan, president of DoubleClick.

"Privacychoices.org is an informational site that provides consumers with the tools they need to better understand their options when it comes to receiving personalized ads."

DoubleClick announced the banner campaign and Web site at a news conference following weeks of controversy over its plans to merge online and offline consumer information. The company later bowed under public pressure, postponing its plans until there was industry and government consensus on the privacy issue.