X, formerly Twitter, requires that viewers of web pages with embedded timelines on any website log in to X.com or Twitter.com (to properly experience timeline viewing) with a browser (log in here), or must sign in with their Google account or Apple account.
Also, viewers’ web browsers must allow cross-site tracking, which is a setting that allows X.com to track users.
How to allow cross-site tracking on Apple iPhone using iOS Safari …
Settings: Safari: Prevent Cross-Site Tracking (Slide switch OFF)
Some browsers (on other devices or other browser on iOS) use a more direct setting that turns Cross-Site Tracking ON.
Settings: Chrome: Allow Cross-Website Tracking (Slide Switch ON)
On a computer or another mobile device, check to see how Cross-Website Tracking is managed for the specific device. There is more information on settings for other devices near the bottom of this page.
X.com requires cross-site tracking for the benefit of its advertisers, and in order to keep X.com a free service, according to the company.
BACKGROUND AND IN-DEPTH INFORMATION ABOUT TIMELINES, CROSS-TRACKING AND PRIVACY
X, formerly Twitter, made some changes during the Summer of 2023 that affected how web designers are allowed to use embedded X ACCOUNTS and embedded LISTS in websites. The changes from X required design changes on subsites of CARDINAL NEWS, known as
The changes implemented by X.com also affected the usability of specific pages on CARDINAL NEWS websites and Arlingtoncardinal.com that are X.com-based. For example …
The issue with the display of X timelines are caused by two new requirements from X.com that …
#1) a user must be a signed in as an X.com user, and
#2) the users’ web browsers must allow cross-site tracking.
Here are the details (which include a good lesson regarding online privacy) …
THINGS TO KNOW …
Twitter is now X.
Tweets are now POSTS.
Embedded x.com (Twitter) timelines on websites, including Arlingtoncardinal.com do not function properly if a web browser user is not logged in to an X account in a web browser. Additionally, on a smartphone, such as Apple iPhone, the user must be logged in to an X account on the Safari iOS browser –the X app sign-in doesn’t qualify for a proper view of embedded X.com timelines in a web browser.
If you have the X app on your iPhone, you will have difficulty logging in to X.com on Safari, because an attempt to go to Twitter.com or X.com will send your view to the app, not the browser. You must direct your browser to twitter.com/login or x.com/login in order to log in to the browser without being referred to the X app.
Additionally, embedded x.com (Twitter) timelines on CARDINAL NEWS websites (and any other website worldwide for that matter) will likely not work properly when a web browser’s Cross-Site Tracking Prevention is turned ON (usually turned on by default). On iOS Safari, turning off Cross-Site Tracking Prevention is equivalent to turning off a privacy feature. Browser users must turn this web browser privacy feature off to see X.com timelines properly when they are viewing websites with embedded X.com timelines. This condition emerged during the Summer of 2023 (mostly July) when X.com (formerly Twitter) adjusted their system in a manner that did not allow the display of embedded Twitter timelines in websites if the viewers of those websites were using a browser with the setting activated that doesn’t allow cross-site tracking.
IMPACT ON PRIVACY
Cross-device tracking techniques are used by advertisers, for example, to help identify which of their channels are most successful in helping convert browsers into buyers. The privacy concern arises for browser users regarding privacy policies that health care providers use, and that financial institutions use that may allow the release of the data they collect after the data has gone through a de-identification process that creates an anonymous profile.
However, that anonymous profile can be rebuilt by using auxiliary data and practices to re-identify an individual.
Browser fingerprinting relies on a user’s browser, and is a way of identifying users or viewers every time they go online — tracking each user’s activity from their anonymous profile. Through fingerprinting, websites can determine the user’s operating system, language, time zone, and browser version without a viewer’s permission. De-anonymization is the practice (including using browser fingerprinting) of matching anonymous data (also known as de-identified data) with publicly available information, or auxiliary data, in order to construct and discover the identity of the person that is using a web browser to view websites.
In additional to being beneficial for advertisers, tracking users can be a good thing because it helps web designers build better websites, and it can be helpful for researchers — particularly in health care — for understanding the health of populations. Tracking can become a bad thing if bad actors work extra hard to construct a profile (via de-anonymization) that could specifically identify each user and then manipulate, harass, strategize against, or commit a crime against a particular user. De-anonymization may be of particular concern for high profile personalities, such as politicians, government officials, CEOs, and celebrities.
Higher profile individuals may require more concern for security issues related to cross-device tracking and de-anonymization.
The average user might have little concern about cross-device tracking for most browsing activities, but be more concerned when filling out a health care application, or browsing or utilizing financial and banking websites or political action websites or employment-related websites. A user might decide to avoid logging in to banking sites with cross-device tracking on by using a different browser (with cross-device tracking turned off) or by using an app from the institution that has cross-device tracking off (Note: Apps usually ask whether it is OK to use cross-device tracking; see Apple: If an app asks to track your activity).
Note that some websites might not function as well when cross-site tracking
For more information you may also want to search the following, for example …
Note: There are other methods of identifying individuals browsing on a website — especially methods available to law enforcement, government and military.
CROSS-SITE TRACKING …
When a web page is not working properly, a browser user or viewer can TURN OFF Cross-Site Tracking Prevention (or as some browsers describe it: TURN ON Cross-Side Tracking). Besides X or Twitter issues, there are many other issues on a website that may be solved by turning off Cross-Site Tracking Prevention.
Some browsers allow a broad setting that turns off Cross-Site Tracking on ALL originating websites, and some browsers only turn off all Cross-Site Tracking for one specific originating website at a time. Conditions that prevent Cross-Site Tracking may be activated by default on browsers upon installation (or from the original device factory settings). To prevent confusion, notice that if a browser user is TURNING OFF Cross-Site Tracking Prevention, the user is TURNING ON the condition of Cross-Site Tracking permission. The methods below that allow Cross-Site Tracking were retrieved late August 2023, and configuration methods may be changed by browser updates without immediate notice on this page.
HOW TO in Safari:
Safari Example (Mac OS): In the Menu bar, click Safari and then Preferences… In the window that opens, click Privacy and uncheck the box next to Prevent cross-site tracking (This is a broad setting that works across all websites viewed on Safari).
In less words …
Safari Example (MacOS): Menu: Preferences: Privacy Tab: Uncheck “Website tracking: Prevent cross-site tracking.
Safari Example (iOS): Apple iPhone Settings: Safari: Turn OFF Privacy & Security Prevent Cross-Site Tracking
Notice that the Safari iOS example (like the MacOS example) turns off Cross-Site Tracking as a broad setting for all websites.
HOW TO in Google Chrome
Using Google Chrome, a user must configure the browser to NOT Send a “Do Not Track” request with browsing traffic.
Desktop/Laptop Example: Preferences menu: Settings: Privacy and Security: Third-Party Cookies: Send a “Do Not Track” request with your browsing traffic (OFF position/slider left).
Mobile Example (iOS): Apple iPhone settings: Chrome: Allow Cross-Website Tracking (ON position/slider right).
NOTE: ON/OFF position in mobile is opposite the desktop/laptop method because the desktop user is turning protection OFF, and the mobile user is turning the ability to track ON.
HOW TO in Firefox:
FireFox Example: Firefox classifies this Cross-Site Tracking prevention as Enhanced Tracking Protection. The Firefox setting is site-specific.
The Mozilla community (founders of Firefox) recommend that if a site seems broken, try turning off Enhanced Tracking Protection. The “off” condition for the specific website allows all trackers to load that might be cross-tracked to that site only. Enhanced Tracking Protection will continue to block trackers on other sites.
Desktop/Laptop Example: Click on the Shield Icon to the left of the address bar while viewing a specific website.
Toggle the switch at the top of the panel to turn Enhanced Tracking Protection to OFF.
This will turn off Enhanced Tracking Protection for the website you were on when you clicked the shield in the address bar. The page will reload automatically and allow trackers on this site only.
Follow the same process to turn Enhanced Tracking Protection back on.
Firefox example (iOS): Apple iPhone settings: Firefox: Allow Cross-Website Tracking (Turn ON to allow cross-site tracking).
NOTE: ON/OFF position is opposite the desktop/laptop method because the desktop user is turning protection OFF, and the mobile user is turning the ability to track ON.
Users may encounter breakage on some sites when browsers are configured with Strict Enhanced Tracking Protection. This is because trackers are hidden in some content. For example, a website might embed an outside video or social media post that contains trackers. To block the trackers, Firefox must also block the content itself.
Trackers are often hidden in the following types of content:
X.COM LISTS …
Know the difference between an X.com timeline and an X.com list
During the summer of 2023, X.com made changes so that X.com LISTS cannot be embedded in a publisher’s web page (even for signed-in X users with Cross-Site tracking permitted). Therefore, currently CARDINAL NEWS is providing link referrals to LISTS directly into X, while removing embedded lists (which might display something like ‘Nothing to see here’).
X (formerly Twitter) LISTS are a nice feature because they allow a publisher to share a customized list of a number of combined X ACCOUNTS into one timeline. For example, a publisher could provide LISTS for a number of different city TV news stations. There could be one list for Chicago, one for New York, and one for Los Angeles — each LIST limited to TV news stations from a specific city. These LISTS aren’t limited to TV News cities, of course. You could have your favorite stores combined in one list, your favorite musicians … really any category.
Most browsers with Cross-Site Tracking Prevention turned on will not allow embedded X ACCOUNT timelines to function either. However, in July 2023, individual X accounts could be embedded again, and display properly if users TURN OFF Cross-Site Tracking Prevention in their browser’s settings, or TURN ON Cross-Site Tracking Permission. Be aware, some browsers use the TURN OFF form and some use the TURN ON form to allow or disallow cross-site tracking.
If users don’t want to TURN OFF Cross-Site Tracking Prevention, they must use the links available on the page and view the X.com timelines directly on X.com (website or app).
AGAIN: What’s the difference between an ACCOUNT and LIST? Here is an example: an ABC 7 Chicago ACCOUNT timeline would only include posts from ABC 7 Chicago. A custom-made Chicago TV News Station LIST timeline might include posts from ABC 7 Chicago, CBS Chicago, WGN News, NBC Chicago, FOX 32 Chicago — all in one timeline.
ANOTHER PROBLEM …
Performance seems to be a little slower on X than the former Twitter, so 360Mediax.com by CARDINAL NEWS, and some other CARDINAL NEWS pages now provide shorter embedded ACCOUNT timelines with additional links to ACCOUNTS directly in X.
The longer timelines seemed to slow things down, too much.
+++++ IMPORTANT ++++
If you’re not logged in to X, and you are viewing a website with X embeds placed in the web page, you won’t see the latest X posts from the X account. You might see a “most recent tweet” from the year 2019 or 2022 or something, even if there are more recent posts available from that particular X account. Or, you might see a message that there is nothing to see here for the ACCOUNT. You can see properly displayed timelines on X or the X app only if you’re logged in to X with a browser that is allowing cross-site tracking.
Formerly (when users weren’t logged in), if they directed browsers to any Twitter ACCOUNT at Twitter.com — let’s say Twitter.com/ABC7Chicago, for example — they would see the Twitter timeline for ABC 7 Chicago. Currently with X.com (the new Twitter.com), all browser referrals to the web address of an X.com ACCOUNT are met with a log-in gateway that doesn’t allow the user to see the timeline for the X.com ACCOUNT until the user logs in.
360MediaX.com is not affiliated with X.com
ChicagoMediaX.com is not affiliated with X.com
The content in Arlingtoncardinal.com/360MediaxExplained and Arlingtoncardinal.com/Xembeds (this page) are nearly identical.