The world’s best known software development platform GitHub will remove all non-essential cookies from its websites to improve developers’ experience and protect their privacy. Visitors to the website will not see a cookie banner on GitHub.com or its subdomains.
The announcement made Friday comes just a week after French regulators revealed they had fined Amazon and Google a combined $219 million for placing non-essential cookies on users’ computer without consent when they visited the tech giant’s websites.
GitHub says more than 56 million developers use its platform, sharing and collaborating on over 100 million code repositories.
Microsoft acquired the popular code-repository service for US$7.5 billion in 2018.
For years companies have skirted privacy laws, planting cookies on people’s computers for tracking and analytics services, often used in online advertising.
However, tightening European data and privacy laws, as well as court decisions have made it clear that consent must be obtained for storing or accessing non-essential cookies.
Typically this consent is obtained using cookie banners but Github says the developer experience trade off is not worth the benefit cookies provide.
“At GitHub, we want to protect developer privacy, and we find cookie banners quite irritating, so we decided to look for a solution,” GitHub CEO Nat Friedman wrote in a blog post.
“After a brief search, we found one: just don’t use any non-essential cookies. Pretty simple, really.
“So, we have removed all non-essential cookies from GitHub, and visiting our website does not send any information to third-party analytics services. (And of course GitHub still does not use any cookies to display ads, or track you across other sites.)”