Violet Blue did a piece on Cnet about the results of a Berkeley study on web privacy. The study showed that the top 100 websites on the net are all tracking anything that clicks.
From the article:
Popular Web sites are far more aggressive in their consumer-tracking practices than most people suspect, according to the first report of UC Berkeley Law School's Web Privacy Census, and consumers are trapped in an escalating privacy crisis with limited control over their personal information.
The most interesting thing from my perspective was this:
The harms of online tracking are real and growing. This isn't about targeted advertising, like the ad industry wants everyone to believe. This is about the collection and use of your personal information in ways you can't even imagine.
Some of the real, demonstrated harms include price discrimination (the WSJ just covered how Orbitz targets Mac users with more expensive hotels), lowered credit scores and limits, denial of insurance coverage/more expensive coverage, lost job opportunities, identity theft, filter bubbles, censorship of speech and association due to fear of later repercussions, and erosion of the 4th Amendment right to privacy (particularly society's collective understanding of when an expectation of privacy is "reasonable" in the face of all this tracking).
The whole article is worth reading. I believe articles on privacy behavior like this, will be the reason why eventually all webmasters will have to do a lot more to protect their visitors' privacy.