By Jennifer Martinez and Brendan Sasso - 12/13/12 11:32 PM EST
"The United States should immediately prepare for an even more treacherous ITU treaty negotiation," McDowell said in a statement. "Those talks could expand the ITU’s reach even further. Accordingly, Internet freedom’s allies everywhere should more than redouble their efforts to erase the damage that was wrought today."
Microsoft warns of regulation if 'Do Not Track' talks fail: Brad Smith, Microsoft's general counsel, warned on Wednesday that Internet companies could be subjected to burdensome regulations next year if voluntary online privacy negotiations fail.
"Looking ahead, I’m hopeful that 2013 will be the year in which a self-regulatory approach to online privacy succeeds. Otherwise, the alternative is a patchwork of regulations imposed by governments around the globe and less protection than consumers deserve and privacy advocates desire," he wrote in a blog post.
The Obama administration has urged industry groups to create a "Do Not Track" button in Web browsers that would allow Internet users to opt out of third-party tracking. But negotiations between advertisers, privacy advocates and other Internet companies over Do Not Track have been at a standstill for months.
Microsoft angered advertisers when it announced earlier this year that it would make its popular Internet Explorer Web browser Do Not Track by default.
Smith said the company remains "steadfast" in its decision to make Do Not Track the default, but he acknowledged that the feature does not work if advertisers do not honor the request.
"Going forward, Microsoft is committed both to continuing to innovate around privacy and collaborating across the industry to give consumers the choice and control they clearly say they want," he said.
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