Independent Ad Tech Is Poking Holes in Google’s Dovekey Proposal

The third-party cookie doomsday clock is now at 15 months, and the ad-tech industry is still at loggerheads over finding a viable replacement for the backbone of web advertising.

Many of these discussions happen on a call every Tuesday within the World Wide Web Consortium’s (W3C) web advertising business group. The most recent call left independent ad-tech scratching its head at Google’s Dovekey proposal.

The main question around Dovekey, the Google Ads team’s proposal to address cookie-less advertising, is who will be the gatekeeper—the entity that connects what happens in the browser with the rest of the ad-tech supply chain.

Turtledove, the Chrome team’s proposal, wants to contain all auction dynamics within the browser. Sparrow, Criteo’s proposal, brings the auctioning outside of the browser and into an independent gatekeeper in part to increase transparency.

Who will be the gatekeeper?

Dovekey sits somewhat in the middle. Auctioning still happens in the

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