Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge
Google is walking back plans to replace third-party cookies with FLoC by instead proposing the Topics API, a new system for interest-based advertising. Topics works by pinpointing five of your interests, such as “Fitness” or “Travel & Transportation,” based on your web activity, as measured by participating sites, for one week.
Your browser will store these topics for three weeks before deleting them. Google says that these categories “are selected entirely on your device” and don’t involve “any external servers, including Google servers.” When you visit a website, Topics will show the site and its advertising partners just three of your interests, consisting of “one topic from each of the past three weeks.”
As noted on the Topics API…