Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Complaint: Google Analytics - Demographics and Interest Reports - New Tracking Code

I was playing around with Google Analytics and stumbled across the Demographics and Interest Reports which seemed interesting at first but it brings me to a page to say that I need to make a change to the scripts to have this work.

Why didn't they just give me the proper scripts to begin with? I have the option already enabled. This is quite a hassle even though I know how to do the work. Then again, after trying to follow the instructions I could not find what they needed me to change.

The instructions is to change:
ga.src = ('https:' == document.location.protocol ? 'https://ssl' : 'http://www') + '.google-analytics.com/ga.js';
To:
ga.src = ('https:' == document.location.protocol ? 'https://' : 'http://') + 'stats.g.doubleclick.net/dc.js'; 

And no where in the script do I have these lines. The code surrounding the lines are not supposed to change but even those are not what the script was provided by Google Analytics. What is provided to me is the follow:
  (function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){
  (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o),
  m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m)
  })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga');
  ga('create', 'UA-xxxxxxx-x', 'xxxxxxxxxxxx.blogspot.com');
  ga('send', 'pageview');
Figuring what the changes are, I could deduce that I change google-analytics.com/ga.js to stats.g.doubleclick.net/dc.js. But then I checked the privacy policy and noticed that that this also required me to update my privacy policy. At this point, this is just too much of a headache so decided not to move forward this change until I figure out what to do about the privacy policy part. Whatever reason for not implementing the change, I find it odd that the instructions to update the script is not correct for me which I would expect from a company like Google.

Release Management

Who's responsibility was this issue? For my team, this would appear to be needed from our product team. It is also odd that no one has a checklist to make sure that documentation should be updated since the instructions appear to have been for an older version (here's an example to publish versions for those people who believe version numbers are practically obsolete due to new agile processes). None of the steps after product would really check on this change because it wouldn't exist in the requirements since it was missed. This wouldn't have a chance to be caught until much later in the process like User Acceptance Test (UAT)... possibly System Test (ST) if they did some free-style testing which I find unlikely since most corporations would have the team follow test scripts which would exist since there was no requirement. Also odd is that even after all that, a user like myself should have reported this by the time I got to this (although I am making a huge assumption that this feature has been out for while). But Google typically had something like a "did you find this helpful" and of course, it does not exist for the one time I looked for it.

So even after all that, there is a chance that I have missed a step somewhere. I am not sure where I skipped a step and if it wasn't that intuitive then something at least needs to be improved.

Reference
Instructions to change - https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/2444872?hl=en&utm_id=ad
Policy requirements - https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/2700409
Google Analytics - https://www.google.com/analytics