Originally Posted by mosaix
Except, apparently, that if you use the same computer to access the multiple accounts they link them via the IP address.
Where on earth have you heard that? It sounds to me like blatant FUD.
Am I the only one who welcomes Google's changes, and thinks that the French watchdog is overacting based on incorrect assumptions?
I use a lot of Google products, including having an Android phone, and to me their changes make perfect sense - if my GPS data shows I spend a lot of time in Durham, then why shouldn't the search results on my desktop browser reflect that? And if log in to a website using my Google account on my desktop and choose to save the passwords, why should that choice not extend to my other Google devices, like (if I had one) my Chromebook?
At the moment, Google is a company that offers a number of different, disconnected services. In an interconnected world, this is insane - because people generally stick with the same provider of services if they like one, it's simply logical to assume that these services, all of which are accessed through the same account
, share information.
The fuss kicked up in the EU is because a French watchdog doesn't agree with the sharing of information between Google services such as Gmail, Calendar, Search, etc, and the Google services such as YouTube and Blogger. Because they're under their own branding, the CNIL thinks they're not Google services... even though you access them through the same Google account.
Now the French seem to have a weird view of the Internet, and how information works. Recently
they fined Google a lot of money because a French cartographer that provides maps for a price, claimed that Google are only offering Maps for free so that they can kill off all competitors and start charging for their service - a claim that completely contradicts the business models of every Google service to date. Before that
, Google were fined because search results for a French insurance provider brought up the word "crook" - a result of the autocomplete algorithm, which predicts results based on the searches of other users. There's a similar case in the US where searches for the Presidential candidate "Santorum" bring up unsavoury definitions of his surname, which came about through a campaign held by a gay rights activist in 2003 who was offended by Santorum's anti-gay stance.
At the end of the day, everything Google is doing is to benefit the users, by offering a better service. Sure, they'll see an increase in revenue from better targeted ads, but what's the problem with that? Google is a for-profit company, not a social service. Better targeting of ads will hopefully mean that people are more likely to see something in an ad that appeals to them. If you don't like the ads, don't click the ads (or install an ad-blocker and face I,Brian's disappointment).
Some final points:
- Trust the algorithm
. Everything Google does with information is carried out by algorithms, not people. No-one is going to read your data.
- Change your world view
. Despite living in a world connected by the Internet, people still have this quaint idea of privacy. The currency of the times is information, so get used to it or drop out of the world entirely.
- Google is by no means the worst offender
. Google are simply one of the larger companies. Do people honestly think that Yahoo don't collect information from people who use their services? Do people honestly think that Microsoft doesn't? That Apple doesn't? Get real. As above - information is currency. To take the opinion that Google is the only company in the world doing things on this scale is foolishly na´ve. Whilst I may give the impression that I am happy for everything about me to be known, that's not true. However, I'd rather my data was with Google than someone like Yahoo, or Apple - I trust Google, I don't trust their competitors.
- Everyone forgets Facebook