...this is why I don't feel all that bad about using Google services and Google having access to data about me. - Oshyan
Same here. I do a lot through Google services (since 2003), was one of the original Gmail users, and have not had one ill effect. I've yet to see where Google has abused its data against someone/anyone. That said, I don't search "child porn" or "making dirty bombs" and starting websites, posting in forums based on the results of such searches. While I never doubt that Google could
abuse its data at any time, I'm keen to Google's activities with regard to government agencies. Yet somehow I don't mind that Google cooperates with law enforcement to stop spammers
. The key is not simply amassing a database (DNA, demographic, usage, traffic, content, etc.), it's whether data mining such a database actually
works. Often the results don't follow.
When the police need help, they have an open door to phone company records and its locational data, which reminds me, many of us haven't enjoyed locational privacy
since we started using cellphones. Use coupons
and soon the company knows more than you want about you. I get my picture taken virtually everywhere I go, from Walmart to the bank ATM to the post office to hardware store, and whenever I drive my car. Shit drives me mad if I think about it. I'm so old, I remember when peeing in a cup for a job interview was a grave offense and invasion of privacy. Now, your application doesn't start
until the pee results come back (which you have to pay for). Of more concern than Google is how restrictive an ISP can be, and the issue of network neutrality. Most law enforcement work presumes most people live their lives by familiar patterns. When those patterns change and go outside the norms (Uncle Earl just started using meth, joined a militia, and suddenly became a god-believer!) is when their job gets easier.
Google also respects a wide variety of formats within its Google Docs apps, and through data liberation
, lets me take my data and documents with me when I leave Google. (Ask Apple if you can do that.) Until Google begins abusing its own policies, I'll continue to enjoy their services.
: My email and internet activities primarily consist of simple correspondence, twittering, and forum participation. I buy most things online and have rarely had a problem that couldn't be fixed. Otherwise, most of my online time is spent reading.