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EU Authorities To Demand Reversal of Google Privacy Policy

Unknown Lamer posted about 2 years ago | from the legal-dept-hiring dept.

EU 177

judgecorp writes "Google's privacy mechanism, which combines personal data from around 60 products, and gives users only one opportunity to opt out, was rolled out in March against requests from privacy regulators in Europe. Now they want the policy reversed, and user data from the different Google products, including Gmail, Search and YouTube, to be separated. The EU attack is lead by French regulator CNIL, which has historically taken a tough line on privacy matters."

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French fight for our freedom? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41665843)

The French may save us yet.

"Are you a criminal?" (5, Insightful)

aliquis (678370) | about 2 years ago | (#41665869)

"Yeah, so what if YouTube let you register with a user name before we bought it. We see you don't use a real name. WTF is up with that? Are you a criminal?

[x] My name is ___________________________
[ ] I'm a criminal."

Re:"Are you a criminal?" (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666531)

[x] My name is Prisoner 24601
[x] I'm a criminal.

Re:French fight for our freedom? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666039)

The French may save us again.

Only this time from ourselves.

Re:French fight for our freedom? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666211)

Kudos to the privacy watchdog.

Don't use google. Don't use facebook. Don't buy apple. This will take you and us all a long way.

Re:French fight for our freedom? (2)

Kergan (780543) | about 2 years ago | (#41666755)

I can see the privacy raminifications of using Google or Facebook. But Apple? Seriously [apple.com] ?

Re:French fight for our freedom? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666787)

Don't buy anything what is made in foreign country.....

Oh wait....

Re:French fight for our freedom? (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about 2 years ago | (#41666959)

Don't buy anything what is made in foreign country.....

Oh wait....

The guy living in a shed in a potato patch [wikipedia.org] just shouted "don't buy anything!"

Re:French fight for our freedom? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666221)

From an imaginary threat raised by microsoft?

I don't need to be saved from that.

Re:French fight for our freedom? (5, Insightful)

davester666 (731373) | about 2 years ago | (#41666341)

No. The French may save French users of Google. Perhaps even for the rest of the EU. But DEFINITELY not for anywhere else.

Google will definitely [if they are forced to keep this information separate for some locations] recode their products to keep it separate for people in those locations and combined everywhere else.

Re:French fight for our freedom? (-1, Flamebait)

gmhowell (26755) | about 2 years ago | (#41666399)

The French may save us yet.

Only if a non-French general leads the troops. OR, a French general leads non-French troops.

Re:French fight for our freedom? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666405)

I live in France, and I work into the IT field. All I can say is that the CNIL is always trying to protect users against their own and deliberate free will. I don't want to agree to a dozen policies to use google services when a clear one has proven to work and be clearer to comprehend. I'm fed up by the lack of sense of CNIL, and I think that by pushing too hard against the users' will they may very well end up being irrelevant (especially at a time of budget cuts).

Re:French fight for our freedom? (5, Informative)

e70838 (976799) | about 2 years ago | (#41667023)

I live in France, and I work into the IT field. I have the complete opposite feeling than the post above. The CNIL has always demonstrated a very deep understanding of technology. Even if it is a state agency, it has provided very sound analysis and opinions on the recent laws (HADOPI, ...) that were demonstrating the stupidity of the proposed laws. The laws were adopted almost unchanged and all the analysis of the CNIL have been proven to be true.

The CNIL is not very powerful and can not go beyond its scope, but I have never been deceived by anything it has produced.

The main root of the CNIL is the history of France during the 2nd world war where some files were used against jews.

Re:French fight for our freedom? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666485)

Keep in mind there is no strong IT industry in France, but many people dislike Google strongly here because they don't like the way new technology (which they see as "Google") forces them to adapt.

Make no mistake, the CNIL happily accepted the Hadopi law (three strikes and you're disconnected). It is NOT fighting for anybody's freedom. It's probably acting on someone's behalf, that someone being a group of interest which lobbied hard enough. (Yes, I'm writing this on an AZERTY keyboard).

Re:French fight for our freedom? (1)

N1AK (864906) | about 2 years ago | (#41667291)

The French may save us yet.

I'd love to see Google remove login ability from all Google products in France and see how long it takes for them to change their mind. I like the integration between Google services, if I was worried about how they were using the data I provide then I'd still be worried if it was silo'd into the different divisions. I still can't for the life of me understand how Google gets so much hassle for this when 'platforms' like Windows Live, iOS, Facebook etc collect at least as wide if not wider swathes of information and often far less transparently.

Curse, evil government regulation! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41665887)

This will surely deter the far better free market solution from being developed.

Whatever it might be. My Capitalist gods haven't told me yet.

We could OPT OUT? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41665893)

What do you mean we had an opportunity to opt out?? It was take it or leave it scenario. Lose your data, change your email, disrupt your life or let us assemble your data.

I switched to DuckDuckGo for search. I did not like adverts for the things I'd been searching for, being presented to me and my family. I've tried to block Google tracking too.

I don't like that I receive an email on [obscure thing] and see adverts for [obscure thing], and I hate the fact that some spotty faced oik in Google can pull up my searches at the tap of a key.

I don't like the fact my Android tablet won't let me remove the Google email account from it, which I wanted to do as soon as they made this change. Next tablet will be Android, but won't be Google Android, it will be some Taiwanese clone.

If they want the Facebook crowd that's up to them, but I don't use Facebook, it's a privacy disaster, and I'm looking for an out to Google if they are trying to copy the crap that Facebook does.

I don't want this privacy invasion, and I'm not French.

Google 'safe browsing' cookie (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666047)

There's one other source of tracking. Firefox has a 'block reported phishing sites'. The way it works is they download a block of partial (32bit) hash keys, WITH A TRACKING COOKIE, each Firefox user gets their own cookie. If a site is in the set of 32bit keys, Firefox asks if the 256 bit hash matches a phishing site to determine if the site actually is a phishing site, or just a hash collision.

In this way, Google can track any website simply by adding its partial key to the list and Firefox will dutifully report it back to Google.

Why does this need a session cookie? why does it need to update the list so incredibly frequently? Why send only partial keys?

A million blocked urls is 8mb of data with 256 bit hashes, that's just a few seconds of youtube video. An incremental update, would be, say 100 urls/day, that's 800 bytes. Firefox could request 'changes since version X', and it would be tiny data.

The way Google implemented it, and the way Firefox uses it means that they gave Google a tracking tool for Firefox users.

I know its throwing the baby out with the bathwater, I turned off the malware warning in Firefox. When I used tamperdata to see data connections on a website, and saw how frequently Firefox was reporting back to Google, I was quite shocked.

Re:Google 'safe browsing' cookie (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666811)

Why does this need a session cookie? why does it need to update the list so incredibly frequently? Why send only partial keys?

Dude, take off the foil hat. I work at the big G (not on anti phishing) and all these concerns have been discussed publicly before. There is a cookie for anti-DoS purposes. Google has the ability to sink large amounts of HTTP traffic using smart load balancers which can handle way more requests than the backends they balance on to. During a DoS attack legitimate cookies that have been observed behaving in a non-abusive manner for a long time can be serviced whilst excluding requests that come in with no cookie or a freshly minted cookie. And let's face it - the anti-phishing system is designed to frustrate criminals, the kind of people who wouldn't hesitate to use DDoS attacks against a blacklisting service.

The list is updated frequently because phishing sites appear and disappear very fast.

If there was no partial server-side matching you could defeat the blocklist by simply using random filenames or ?q=abc suffixes on the phishing page (eg every spam you send with a phishing link could have a unique URL). Then a list of even a million URLs would be insufficient. By having partial/prefix matches that trigger a server side lookup more advanced logic can be used that doesn't require protocol changes to every client, in extreme cases you could even imagine hand crafted code that understands how to spot patterns in particularly tricky campaigns.

CAPTCHA: explains

You're not the good guys (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41667193)

"There is a cookie for anti-DoS purposes"
You gave yourselves permission to link that cookie to other data. You say, its to continue providing service while a DOS attack is in progress (from my IP presumably, since you'd know by IP address where the queries are from). Why wouldn't you issue the cookie only if there was a DOS attack from my IP and you'd asked me to fill in a captcha?

Understand this, having misused my data, having changed the privacy agreement between you and me, you DON'T GET TO BE THE GOOD GUYS. You don't get to say (in essence) "trust us because [technical reason] we promise not to misuse the system", because having done a Facebook you don't get trust by default. The argument will never be now if [technical reason] is the best solution because you changed your privacy agreement, it will be if there's a [technical reason] that doesn't involve sending you data then your [technical reason] is now [technical excuse].

"And let's face it - the anti-phishing system is designed to frustrate criminals, the kind of people who wouldn't hesitate to use DDoS attacks against a blacklisting service"

I've turned it off. I saw the volume of connections from Firefox to your servers was frequent.
I didn't like what I saw. I'd been told this was just a hash table from Google, I imagined a hash table with daily updates, I imagined Firefox trying different components of the URL and the table containing a hash at the level of trust, and flagging it to me if there was a match for that domain, that folder, that url. Yet no, it's a systems that hands Google a lot of data. A [technical reason] where other [technical reason]s would achieve the same result yet not hand you data.

Cyber criminals phishing for my data is almost non existent, I've never had a correct report from that service, yet its been sending data to Google all the time. I turned it off, I've stopped the biggest case of data phishing.

"If there was no partial server-side matching you could defeat the blocklist by simply using random filenames"
And you can't think of any other approach? Seriously? You can't think of an approach that doesn't require URL analysis of any url on Google server, at Googles request?

As I said, I'm extracting myself from Google services one by one.

Re:We could OPT OUT? (4, Interesting)

kqs (1038910) | about 2 years ago | (#41666097)

What does opting out of a privacy policy mean? "I refuse to be bound by this policy, so there is no policy and you can do whatever you want with my data"? "I refuse to be bound by this one policy, I prefer a different policy on every google service I use"? And do you expect google (or anyone) to maintain code to implement every privacy policy they've ever had? How would that work?

Opting out of a privacy policy means not using the service. Wanting to use the service but refusing the privacy policy is much like wanting to eat at a restaurant but not wanting to pay your bill.

Re:We could OPT OUT? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666167)

I eat at a restaurant, they change the prices on me after I've ordered. I then refuse to pay the newly inflated bill,
I insist on paying the old bill, the bill as was agreed when I gave you may order.

It's a bad metaphor because I agreed on ongoing supply of food at an agreed price. Google receives my money (or data or eyeballs), yet wants to inflate this.

I can only take snapshots of my data back, I can't update everyone who thinks my email is bob@gmail.com, I can't update everyone who thinks my video is 'bob channel' on youtube.

So I expect them to deliver the service they agreed at the price they agreed it. Where I can ditch Google (e.g. DuckDuckGo) I did it. But I shouldn't have to.

Re:We could OPT OUT? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666235)

I eat at a restaurant, they change the prices on me after I've ordered. I then refuse to pay the newly inflated bill,
I insist on paying the old bill, the bill as was agreed when I gave you may order.

It's a bad metaphor because I agreed on ongoing supply of food at an agreed price. Google receives my money (or data or eyeballs), yet wants to inflate this.

I can only take snapshots of my data back, I can't update everyone who thinks my email is bob@gmail.com, I can't update everyone who thinks my video is 'bob channel' on youtube.

So I expect them to deliver the service they agreed at the price they agreed it. Where I can ditch Google (e.g. DuckDuckGo) I did it. But I shouldn't have to.

It's a perfect metaphor.

You agree to pay a restaurant a certain price for a slice of pie in the 1950's. Let's say 25 cents. You then eat said slice of pie.

Sixty years later, you cannot expect to order the same slice of pie for 25 cents.

Why do you expect service agreements to always stay the same? And your case that the restaurant increased the price after you ordered and ate the pie is invalid. In this case, you have to pay before you get pie. You just don't like the increased price.

Except (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666257)

"You agree to pay a restaurant a certain price for a slice of pie in the 1950's. Let's say 25 cents. Sixty years later, you cannot expect to order the same slice of pie for 25 cents."

The EU privacy law says "no unnecessary linkage of data", Google decided it would help itself to cross linkage data. I'm extracting myself from Google. Search has gone to DuckDuckGo, I'll extract my email from them over time, and youtube when a new suitable alternative arises. I've also blocked their tracking, and adverts, because I don't trust them to abide by 'do not track'. Android tablet I'm stuck with, I'll change it on the next upgrade.

It will take time to extract myself. Until that date, I expect Google to comply with "no unnecessary linkage" rule of EU privacy law, which was the same law that existed when they first offered their service.

I notice that there is no defense here other than bad metaphors. Google are not special. It's not like Facebook can do stuff and it's bad, and Google does the same thing and its good. It's not.

They chose to do a Facebook on me, and I expect the EU to do its job, and the broken trust with Google means I'll extract myself from their services regardless. It's not their data, it's mine.

Re:Except (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666549)

unnecessary is such a fun term when it comes to legality.

It's almost as good as "up to" or "some".

Re:We could OPT OUT? (0)

ohnocitizen (1951674) | about 2 years ago | (#41666395)

Its a terrible metaphor. A better metaphor would be living in an apartment for free, in exchange for letting the landlord collect information about you to sell to advertisers (and show you advertisements in your bathroom). The longer you live in that apartment, the more effort, time, and money it would take to move your belongings to another apartment. Now imagine each year, rather than raising the rent, the landlord starts making increasingly invasive demands. Now he wants to track what you buy at the grocery store. The following year he wants to replace the audio recording devices with a few video devices. Maybe he wants to collect info from your car/subway/bus usage. And so on. Suddenly that initial trust that caused you to move in has eroded, yet moving out is not a trivial decision.

This is why I am glad there are people who fight for privacy rights.

Re:We could OPT OUT? (1)

bickerdyke (670000) | about 2 years ago | (#41666501)

What do you mean we had an opportunity to opt out?? It was take it or leave it scenario. Lose your data, change your email, disrupt your life or let us assemble your data.

I doubt you'd actually have lost any of your data. Google services usually offer a way to export it for backup purposes - or if you indeed plan to switch. They even have a special team to organize that. www.dataliberation.org (well... they may not exactly LOOK like an engineering team...)

I switched to DuckDuckGo for search

isn't that a google search query in disguise?

So what happens? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41665895)

...and what happens if this works and google reverts the policy? Does anyone here know exactly what the problem is with the new one?

Re:So what happens? (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about 2 years ago | (#41666967)

...and what happens if this works and google reverts the policy?

You'd have ten bleeding passwords to remember instead on one sign-on

Not an issue for me (5, Interesting)

aNonnyMouseCowered (2693969) | about 2 years ago | (#41665907)

Really, I don't see this as an issue if you're volunteering your personal info to Google anyway. I'm more worried by the tracking that Google does even if you're not logged in, say, via its ad and recaptcha services.

Re:Not an issue for me (1, Offtopic)

tooyoung (853621) | about 2 years ago | (#41666163)

Totally, same thing with Facebook.

Re:Not an issue for me (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41667061)

The problem is that if you're watching Justin Bieber clips in YouTube, you will get JB ads when you open your GMail even if your emails have nothing to do with it. Some people don't like the idea of cross-service advertisement.

And I want a pony... (5, Interesting)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | about 2 years ago | (#41665925)

Really though, unlike with Intel or Microsoft, I've never felt like I have been wronged by Google, which is probably why my knee jerk reaction is that this is just another extortion racket and an organization hired to cause a stir.

Re:And I want a pony... (4, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 2 years ago | (#41666007)

which is probably why my knee jerk reaction is that this is just another extortion racket and an organization hired to cause a stir.

CNIL (Commission nationale de l'informatique et des libertés) translates to 'National commission on informatics and liberties'

Unlike America, European regulators take their privacy seriously.
They are mostly independant and don't have to bow down to political pressure.
You seem to be confusing "not captured by corporate interests" with "just another extortion racket."

Re:And I want a pony... (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666087)

Unlike Americans, Europeans are more worried about corporations spying on them than their governments.

Re:And I want a pony... (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666369)

Unlike Americans, Europeans are more worried about corporations spying on them than their governments.

As it turns out, any information you give to a corporation ends up at the government.

Re:And I want a pony... (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about 2 years ago | (#41666973)

Unlike Americans, Europeans are more worried about corporations spying on them than their governments.

As it turns out, any information you give to a corporation ends up at the government.

And with all the "outsourcing" vica versa

Re:And I want a pony... (3, Informative)

Sique (173459) | about 2 years ago | (#41666603)

Unlike Americans, Europeans are worried about both corporations and the government spying on them. In Germany, Data Rendition laws are suspended for now, and in Austria, they didn't pass the parliament for now.

Re:And I want a pony... (0)

war4peace (1628283) | about 2 years ago | (#41666875)

I'm an European (despite what the French say) and I never really cared. I'm an Average Joe with too little money to be interesting and my online life is as dull as a wooden plank. here, google, take my data and shove it in your... data warehouse.
My mindset revolves around this: Anything you put online means you void your privacy rights to that stuff, nothing else.

Re:And I want a pony... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41667213)

So you would gladly show your ass online for 10 modpoints?

Re:And I want a pony... (2)

MrDoh! (71235) | about 2 years ago | (#41666123)

Which is fair, but how will splitting the privacy policies back into various areas HELP privacy? Doesn't putting them all in one place for Google products make it easier? And even if split, do they not get how Google tracks everything anyway? Very strange way to help people I'd think.

Re:And I want a pony... (5, Insightful)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 2 years ago | (#41666203)

Which is fair, but how will splitting the privacy policies back into various areas HELP privacy? Doesn't putting them all in one place for Google products make it easier? And even if split, do they not get how Google tracks everything anyway? Very strange way to help people I'd think.

Well, before, Google had a different privacy policy for every product. This resulted in your YouTube browsing habits not being able to be shared with your GMail history, Google homepage not being able to search your e-mail or possibly throwing up your email search results when you search, etc.

By unifying the privacy policy, Google made it easier to combine the data about you from many silos into one. Perhaps you were doing some Google searches about say, gay marriage. Now your YouTube ads for that next cat video can suggest gay marriage pastors. Or election ads about gay marriage.

Or perhaps you're trying to keep your online activities separate. Perhaps you enjoy downloading the latest music and movies, but keep that separated somehow from your other activities. Perhaps using another browser. Or perhaps another computer. Problem is, you use Google on both, and eventually Google links both your nefarious pirate ways with your real life ways, so the MPAA and RIAA can now positively identify you through Google. (Ask Jammie Thomas).

All the EU is doing is basically telling Google to put the data back in their individual silos and stop mising and churning it. Of course, law enforcement and IP lovers will be a lot less happy if they can't get at your user profile and prove that you are the person being accused through Google's profiling of your activities (the links are more tenuous when data is isolated. When they're combined, they're very powerful).

Of course, this also allows Google to aid in finding people who do bad things - they can link the searches to the youtube videos to the G+ postings and all that. Perhaps even to their facebook account and get a name/location/etc.

Oh yeah, trust me, it's not just advertisers/insurance people interested in your habits. And heck,one silo also means that false information can be rapidly corrected (yay!), alongside with notes on the false information in case you used it elsewhere, providing more linking data.

Re:And I want a pony... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666227)

So what you're saying is:

"if you do SOME illegal things, and mostly non-illegal things, then privacy is a good thing"

Personally, if I want to do something illegal, I lobby to raise awareness of the cause, attempt to get support from the majority of voters + counsel / whatever body of government has jurisdiction over the topic, then if I turn out to be in the minority that feels something SHOULD be legal, I do this crazy thing that nobody else in the world seems to understand:

I yield to the democratic majorities decision, and refrain from doing it.

I know, it's crazy. I should be burned at the stake or something.

Re:And I want a pony... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666609)

I yield to the democratic majorities decision

So... what you're saying is that had you been a cop on the bus with Rosa Parks, you'd have forced her to sit in the back?

Because, you know, that was the democratic majorty's decision, and "the law" and all that.

Trust me brother (or sister), (a) the law is not always right, and (b) both compliance and/or enforcement with/of the law can be evil in and of itself.

Re:And I want a pony... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666933)

I absolutely agree. It should also be noted that civic duty goes beyond simple compliance; sometimes it is one's duty as a citizen to disobey the law. Not only are we obliged as individuals to oppose legal evils and the illegality of goods, but we are also so obliged as citizens.

The grandparent poster's glib attitude towards legal conformism is a recipe for social stagnation and the worst excesses of what Aristotle accurately diagnosed as the democratic perversion of the common good: the majority may enslave the minority.

The balance is not easy to find, nor defensible with absolute certainty. But the alternative is no alternative at all.

Re:And I want a pony... (1, Interesting)

kenorland (2691677) | about 2 years ago | (#41666345)

All the EU is doing is basically telling Google to put the data back in their individual silos and stop mising and churning it

And what defines "separate"? Facebook has a single privacy policy for your profile, photos, videos, blog posts, etc.

All the EU is really doing is politically motivated posturing: they don't like Google because the big European corporations their member governments are in bed with haven't figured out how to compete with Google.

Re:And I want a pony... (3, Interesting)

Sique (173459) | about 2 years ago | (#41666645)

Actually, there are no European companies trying to compete with Google and failing. There are no European companies even trying. (I think, the last one was Telefónica, which bought Lycos years ago, but put it to rest in 2008). So which are those imaginary corporations you are talking about?

Re:And I want a pony... (1)

Savage-Rabbit (308260) | about 2 years ago | (#41666795)

All the EU is really doing is politically motivated posturing: they don't like Google because the big European corporations their member governments are in bed with haven't figured out how to compete with Google.

Actually, there are no European companies trying to compete with Google and failing. There are no European companies even trying. (I think, the last one was Telefónica, which bought Lycos years ago, but put it to rest in 2008). So which are those imaginary corporations you are talking about?

Stop ruining our anti-american conspiracy hysteria with 'facts'...

Re:And I want a pony... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666937)

A ludicrous conspiracy theory without an ounce of evidence.

One must ask: why is it you feel such personal loyalty to a corporation which does not reciprocate? How would you have felt having read something like your post above - but written by someone else about regulatory challenges to another corporation (perhaps Microsoft, or Apple)?

Re:And I want a pony... (3, Interesting)

Solandri (704621) | about 2 years ago | (#41666459)

That's one benefit Google got from combining the privacy policies - obviously the one which makes Google look worst so it's the reason most commonly trotted out. The flip side is by having each service have its own privacy policy, users had to keep track of each separate privacy policy (and Google's employees working on multiple products were uncertain of what they could and couldn't do with the data). Subtle differences between policies got lost amidst the similarities. Consolidating everything into a single unified "Google policy" made it easier for users to know what they were getting and for Google to know what it could do.

There are pros and cons to either approach. Anyone telling you one is universally better than the other is selling you something. Stripped of any nefarious advertising and creepy privacy invasion overtones, the default condition would be for Google to consolidate them into one policy simply to reduce bureaucracy and paperwork. So I think the onus should be on those advocating separate policies to justify why the benefits of having them separate outweigh the drawbacks.

Re:And I want a pony... (1)

SnowZero (92219) | about 2 years ago | (#41666575)

Google Now [google.com] is an example of a product that could not exist without data sharing. The premise is that it cross references data to make timely suggestions, such as letting you know when you should leave for the airport if you have a flight, and if your flight is on time. It can do this even though you never explicitly told it you have a flight or made a calendar entry.

Re:And I want a pony... (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 2 years ago | (#41666579)

Well, before, Google had a different privacy policy for every product. This resulted in your YouTube browsing habits not being able to be shared with your GMail history, Google homepage not being able to search your e-mail or possibly throwing up your email search results when you search, etc.

.

No it didn't, they still tracked it and tied it together as needed. Why SHOULDN'T they be allowed to. You have to actively provide them with information in order for them to get it. They don't come into your home and read your mail, you give them your mail and your search queries and everything else.

If you don't want people to know what you are doing, don't let them know you are doing it. This may mean you have to make sure your browser doesnt' tell them anything but its really stupid to get all uppity about something you hand over willingly. When gets info that you don't give to them through your own action of using their services (even indirectly via things like recaptcha) then you can talk, until then you're just being selfish and acting like your entitled to have your cake, eat it, and have Google's cake too.

If I were Google I'd simply turn off services in France, see how long that lasts.

You can go fuck yourself if you think I'm not going to use my web server logs to correlate everything I possibly can from your activities.

Re:And I want a pony... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666955)

'You can go fuck yourself if you think I'm not going to use my [binoculars trained on your house] to correlate everything I possibly can from your activities.'

Creepy Google shill.

Re:And I want a pony... (1)

MrDoh! (71235) | about 2 years ago | (#41666591)

Ah, so it's the cross-sharing that was new? I always thought they were doing that anywhere, you just had to agree/turn it off in various places and the big merge was to do it in one location.

Re:And I want a pony... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666827)

I hope that every Google service could be easily linked by user itself. Like having a mashup graphic of Google services where "Google Search" is at center and then all services around it in circle. Then user just drags a lines from services what they want to be able connect their information.

Like drag Google Search to Google+ and then Picasa to Google+ and you get Google+ service where you can search your posts and post images to it. But you need to link Google Search to Picasa in same "circle" to be able search your images.

Then do same thing with other services like Gmail, Google Maps and Google+ by combining them as single circle and dragging directions from what service to where.

Re:And I want a pony... (-1, Troll)

kenorland (2691677) | about 2 years ago | (#41666353)

Unlike America, European regulators take their privacy seriously.

No, they don't. European regulators like to cause trouble to US companies, while European governments and many European companies get a free pass.

You seem to be confusing "not captured by corporate interests" with "just another extortion racket."

Are you kidding? European governments are completely captured by corporate interests. In this case, those corporate interests happen to hate Google.

Re:And I want a pony... (1)

Sique (173459) | about 2 years ago | (#41666651)

So which corporations are you talking about? Name one big European search engine or video portal!

Re:And I want a pony... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666825)

Unlike America, European regulators take their privacy seriously.

No, they don't. European regulators like to cause trouble to US companies, while European governments and many European companies get a free pass.

Which is a behavior the USA does not exhibit and never has...

Re:And I want a pony... (5, Insightful)

Paradise Pete (33184) | about 2 years ago | (#41666069)

I've never felt like I have been wronged by Google

Right now Google's not hurting, so they can be more selective in what thy do with that data. But when times get tough, and they probably will, Google will resort to all sorts of tricks to keep that cash cow mooing.

Re:And I want a pony... (1, Flamebait)

Solandri (704621) | about 2 years ago | (#41666497)

And every man has a penis so they could potentially rape a woman. Every screwdriver could potentially be used to break into a house. Every Internet connection could potentially be used to download copyrighted material.

An argument that someone has to be pre-prohibited from potentially doing something bad has to have more to it than an unsubstantiated assertion that "Google will resort to all sorts of tricks." Otherwise you can ban just about anything under the premise of protecting the greater good. It's an ugly argument that has seen the presumption of innocence tossed out when it comes to copyright violations on the Internet. Someone files a DMCA complaint against you and you're presumed guilty until you prove your innocence, simply because you could be violating a copyright holder's rights.

Re:And I want a pony... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666945)

I have a hand and boot.
When times get tough in this conversation, I probably come to your place to kick and punch my argument to your face to show others that in my argument has valid point.

Honestly... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41665927)

Violent video games do make people more likely to commit acts of violence. I'm tired of people bringing up the fact that crime rates among youth has decreased; alcohol consumption has been proven to cause liver cirrhosis (that's hard, objective science), and yet while alcohol consumption has gone up, liver cirrhosis has gone down. Statistics cannot disprove the undisputed fact that video games cause violence. Many internationally and nationally recognized scientific organizations have come to this conclusion.

Re:Honestly... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41665957)

Your momma is being buttfucked by a canoe as we speak.

Re:Honestly... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666103)

Troll? There is tons of scientific evidence to back up the fact that video games cause violence.

Re:Honestly... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666265)

There is tons of scientific evidence to back up the fact that video games cause violence.

Tons?, Care to provide links to this, as thou art an expert? (and I can't be arsed Googling this, as I've work to go to)
Last time I looked, admittedly several years back, all I remember was a lot of dodgy statistics being peddled by people with an agenda/grudge.

I really wish this was an imageboard at times, I'd post a picture of the person I know who plays all the most violent games imaginable, (and has done so for years) with an ickle-wickle black kitty curled up under his deranged psychopathic chin, complete with glaekit look of happiness on his otherwise stone-cold-killer-of-pixels face..

Re:Honestly... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666271)

So cite one that is on the web so that we can discuss it. Saying something does not make it true.

Re:Honestly... (1)

Sique (173459) | about 2 years ago | (#41666655)

I only remember one where the result was, that yes, playing violent video games increases your aggressivity. The effect in size was comparable to drinking a pot of coffee.

Seriously? (4, Insightful)

ras (84108) | about 2 years ago | (#41665949)

All these web sites are owned by the same people. Are the EU saying a company can't mine the data the EU says it is allowed to collect? How on earth do you even police that?

Besides, it's a non-issue, as it is under the users control anyway. If you don't want Google tying the data together use different use names on each site. It is not like it is rocket science.

Re:Seriously? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666073)

My issue is that google is forcing me to broadcast my private stuff to strangers.
Google's issue is that people leave embarassingly shitty comments on videos.

The obvious solution is just to turn off all personalization and feedback. However, Google -- stupidly -- is trying to build their own social network to rival Facebook. Their strategy is stupid, because for years they've triumphed by being better and less evil than the other guy. My approach was just to boycott other google products in favor of youtube. Unfortunately, there is no alternative to it. However, I use it rarely. In exchange for my rare preference for funny vids, Google lost some important social contacts and private emails that have gone to Facebook. Real smart move on their part, huh? Well, maybe it was -- until a youtube killer comes out, Google is number one there. However, their business model has changed for the worse. It's only a matter of time until someone less evil than Google arises, and then Google is toast.

Re:Seriously? (3, Informative)

kqs (1038910) | about 2 years ago | (#41666127)

The obvious solution is just to turn off all personalization and feedback.

Indeed. Much like some people commit fraud on the stock market. The obvious solution is to turn off the stock market. Brilliant!

I'm not sure how google is forcing you to broadcast private stuff; I don't think they're forcing you to comment, are they? If you comment, and you know that the comment will be tagged with your real name, then there is no force, you just make a choice.

Re:Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666667)

I agree.
I've been drinking the Google Koolaid for a while now, and you know what..
it tastes delicious.
Sure My data (anonomised) is being used for targetted advertising, but you know what? the benefits of a wholely consistent privacy policy and integration of all the services makes it a hell of a lot more powerful. I use ALL their services (ok so maybe not all, but Gmail, Maps, Docs, G+, Calander, Picassa, Sketchup, Translate, Wallet, Chrome, Sites, Android.. and develop for android so I use the Google Play Store and have a merchant wallet account as well)

What is the problem here? I've signed up to allow them to use my annonomised user data. they are not broadcasting any of my personal data that I've been made aware of.. But I am getting all these services Seamlessly integrated for ZERO cost to buy, and for me to Pay google, I concent to letting them target me with advertising. As long as my private data is obfuscated, and a complete profile is not provided to other parties, then I dont care.. which is what you sign up to.

Re:Seriously? (1, Interesting)

martin-boundary (547041) | about 2 years ago | (#41666773)

I'm not sure how google is forcing you to broadcast private stuff; I don't think they're forcing you to comment, are they? If you comment, and you know that the comment will be tagged with your real name, then there is no force, you just make a choice.

Easy. They are forcing you to choose between all your comments being around forever, or keeping quiet forever.

See, if one day you make a comment in real life to a friend, they probably won't remember next year what you said, and even so, nobody else is likely to even know what you said that day.

But Google spies on you all the time, and if you make a comment to a friend within range of a Google service, they will remember what you said in 10 years, and they will tell what you said to everybody who wants to snoop on you, for the rest of your life.

So your choice is: comment while being very careful what you say, or keep quiet. Better not use the internet while drunk, either.

Re:Seriously? (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 2 years ago | (#41666585)

How does Google FORCE you to do anything, do they come and put a gun to your head and make you use their services? If so thats a new one on me, otherwise by 'force' you mean 'they log me when I use their services' ...

Exactly like your credit card and bank transactions yet you seem to ignore that fact ... you do realize that data is sold as well right? And that Google doesn't actually sell the data to anyone else, they just use it to make their services work better for their customers (advertisers). The advertisers NEVER get your data.

Re:Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666075)

It doesn't matter if you're using different names. The accounts will be linked because of the shared ip.

Re:Seriously? (4, Insightful)

Zemran (3101) | about 2 years ago | (#41666135)

"use different use names on each site."

and do not forget to use different computers for each site as well because they track your use and know if you are using a different name on each site. So you need one computer for Google, one for Gmail, one for Youtube, etc.

It is a big issue to a European that assumes a right of privacy but of course to an American who is only used to that right in name alone, this is not an issue. In Europe the data remains mine. I own it. They can use it only as I allow them to use my data.

Re:Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41667077)

If you think you own that data in any meaningful way or you or the EU can ultimately restrict Google's use of it your a naive idiot. I could throw in some snide generalization about Europeans here like you did about Americans, but I prefer my bigoted remarks to be directed at ethnicities not continent of origin.

Re:Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41667247)

Google must think that me and my husband are one person using that logic...

Re:Seriously? (1)

boarder8925 (714555) | about 2 years ago | (#41666253)

It is not like it is rocket science.

No, but it is like rocket surgery.

Easy you put into law (5, Insightful)

aepervius (535155) | about 2 years ago | (#41666515)

We have had law about privacy and IT and database for about as long as it started to become a phenomenon, I think back in the 80ies. For example you may not in certain circumstance do a join on database, or have races, skin color, religion, political affiliation, or whatnot mentioned in some database (I don't recall exactly when it is allowed, but you can take for granted that in a commercial database it is msotly not allowed). There is something similar on EU level.

That you in the US (or any other country) don't care that you are the "product" is your problem. but if google want to have a commercial presence in EU it better respect our privacy laws. And No it is not YOUR responsibility to use different usernames, it is google responsibility to respect law and not join DB.

Re:Seriously? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 2 years ago | (#41666727)

not allowed to mine data they collect from different sources for different purposes? what's strange about that.

Re:Seriously? (1)

jonbryce (703250) | about 2 years ago | (#41667001)

Yes that is correct. If you collect personal data for one purpose, you are not allowed to use it for another purpose without the data subject's permission.

For example, if you collect data about a user's web browsing activity for the purpose of advising them if the page they are about to visit contains malware or is a phishing site, you can't then use it for targeted advertising without the user's explicit permission. Burying it in paragraph 11428 of the T&C that they never read is not obtaining their explicit permission.

why? (0)

Osgeld (1900440) | about 2 years ago | (#41666095)

so people have to opt out 60 fucking times?

so EU, just how retarded are you?

Re:why? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666375)

Opt out of what, you retarded baboon?

Re:why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666555)

ook ook, ook ook ook ook clod!

Re:why? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666639)

We are less retarded than you, US of A moron.

The EU is so relevant... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666115)

Someone should let the EU know that the Internet and Internet companies are not within their control.

Sure, they can pass laws, and those laws will make Google France and Google Italy and Google [etc.] leave... but they can't pass laws that make "Google" [Internet company] change the way it [globally] does business.

The Eu was relevant once. Nobody knows when. Right now they are wasting valuable resources in the middle of the REAL WAR. The copyright maximalists vs freedom of speech.

EU, try to be useful. Until then, STFeU.

E

Re:The EU is so relevant... (1)

Sique (173459) | about 2 years ago | (#41666823)

They can do that. If Google does not play by their rules, they can put penalties on Google or even exclude Google from doing business in the EU. Sure, Google can still do business in other legislations, but no revenue will come to them from the EU.

Silly Europeeons (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666149)

If they have problems with companies such as Google exercising their American God given FREEDOM, then why don't they invent their own damn search engine? (Which I'm sure would turn out to be a joke anyway) What is their problem anyway? Why don't they for once try to learn from America rather than constantly trying to resist it? Why do they always have to be so jealous of our freedom? When will they ever realize that they have nothing to gain by all this?

Microsoft Policy (2)

hresult (902522) | about 2 years ago | (#41666183)

Interesting, why don't they also require Microsoft to reverse its recent privacy policy change which is essentially the same (unification of the company's services).

You can choose (0)

GeXX (449863) | about 2 years ago | (#41666307)

Much like radio stations that now have censorship, no one is forcing anyone to use google, if you do not like them, change your service.

If you are so afraid that some data may get out there, don't use it.. Roll your own servers, and provide your own stuff. Anything and everything that google does is optional to use. There are plenty of other video sites, they may not have as much as youtube, but they are out there.

The amount of money needed to keep a company like google going is huge. Hell just the other day 8 million people watched live a video online in HD for almost 3 hours. Name another site on the net that could do that kind of traffic? Gmail has almost 500 million users.

Google provides a great product, and they are unifying everything across the board, I for one love all the unification. Why fragment everything?

If google burns me, somehow, then I can go switch to other services, run a maemo phone, start developing my own stuff and there you go.

Both microsoft and apple also have similar privacy policies, so if you are going with the big 3, and have privacy concerns then you will be missing out on what is going on in the world today.

Re:You can choose (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666347)

Much like radio stations that now have censorship

What do you mean?

too bad... (1)

kenorland (2691677) | about 2 years ago | (#41666333)

It's too bad people can't opt out of the intrusive data collection and privacy invasion schemes of the European governments. Frankly, I greatly prefer Google having my private data than the German or French government.

Re:too bad... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666409)

It's too bad people can't opt out of the intrusive data collection and privacy invasion schemes of the European governments. Frankly, I greatly prefer Google having my private data than the German or French government.

You're crazy. How could the German government having access to your dox possibly go wrong [jewishvirtuallibrary.org] ?

/Godwin

it's better to use many services anyway (1)

kenorland (2691677) | about 2 years ago | (#41666381)

I don't like Google tying together all these services. I think it is a privacy nightmare and it's risky too. For example, if your Google account gets disabled because of a blog post, you lose access to all your Android apps and Google movies. But you know what? You have a choice.

The sooner people realize this, the better, because that means it keeps alternative services viable. And there still are plenty of alternatives to every service Google offers.

But we don't need European "privacy regulators". Slaps on the fingers of companies like this are thoroughly ineffective in terms of protecting your privacy. And if European privacy regulators succeed in legitimizing the single-service-for-everything, we are worse off, because terms of service don't protect you from criminal or governmental misuse of your aggregated data.

Re:it's better to use many services anyway (2)

gl4ss (559668) | about 2 years ago | (#41666819)

uhh.. many of these services WERE different services, like youtube.

buying services and integrating data from them to google main db is googles business. that's not entirely within eu laws though.

Re:it's better to use many services anyway (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41667239)

Which is the whole problem.

It's the problem with capitalism in general. It happens all the time, everywhere.

I think buying a company in another market area should be considered illegal if your market share is above 50%. Hell, make it 30%.

How the Obama/Romney campaigns mine data (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41666513)

He points out that they've been buying Facebook friends networks, and so on.
http://www.democracynow.org/2012/10/15/vote_stalkers_obama_romney_campaigns_mine

Look at what the Koch brothers are up to, they're telling their employees that if they vote Romney it will risk their jobs. If Koch can buy your Facebook data, or Google data then they can know how you vote. There is considerable danger in letting companies be so free and easy with your data.

Perhaps you're Republicans, and are OK with Koch doing it? Well what if a supporter of Obama did it to Republican voters??

Re:How the Obama/Romney campaigns mine data (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 2 years ago | (#41666613)

While I'd never work for someplace that even threatened to hold who I vote for against me there are a couple things to note here:

There are other places to work.

You don't have to publicly broadcast your political agenda.

You can lie about who you voted for.

Those last two are made so intentionally by the fact that voting is not tied to you, its 'anonymous' as far as what YOU actually selected, they only know that you voted. Its built into the system to prevent the Koch bothers from doing that ... if you turn around and tell them, or Facebook, or any other PUBLIC SITE then its your own fault for being so retarded. You probably shouldn't be voting in the first place you clearly aren't smart enough to make intelligent decisions if you're worried about people knowing who you vote for and then make that info public and bitch about potential aftermath.

Eyeballs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41667339)

You wake up in the morning and turn on your bedroom light; the lady across the street knows when you woke up.
You pull out of the driveway to go to work; your neighbor knows when you left for work.
The cop on the corner sees you drive by; that policeman knows what route you took to work.
The guard at your office sees you pull in; he knows when you got to work.
The postman reads your envolopes, and knows who is writing letters to you.
The waitress at the cofffee shop knows what you ordered for lunch.
On the way home you stop at 7/11; the clerk knows what you bought.
You watch TV in the evning, and the cable service knows what you watched.
You turn out the light at night, and go to bed; the lady across the street know when you slept.

Normal, yes? Now imagine that all of those people are THE SAME PERSON. A guy in a blue suit with a white shirt and red necktie. He watches your house at night. He sees you drive to work. He takes your order in the coffee shop. He sells you stuff at 7/11. He can tell what you are watching on TV. And he writes it all down in a little notebook he has. His name is "Google".

Are you parnoid yet? I am.

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