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I enjoy watching how much exposure Google fanboys give Microsoft's Scroogled campaign by resharing the videos just to whine about them. Not sure they realize that's how marketing works.
Jake Weisz's profile photoEli Fennell's profile photoDavid Lawerteh's profile photoLauren Weinstein's profile photo
I'm actually really happy Microsoft is doing it. While the acting is terrible, it draws a lot of attention to a discussion Google would rather you don't have: That privacy matters.
The things shown in the videos are also issues Microsoft has themselves. Either way you posted about it so you are helping the marketing as well. :-)
+Franklin C I'm happy to help. When people accuse Microsoft of the same issues, they're generally referring to Microsoft's nascent cloud services. I have no interest in those.

Microsoft offers real software you can own and directly control that stores data within your own device.
I can't help it.  I know its not helping to reshare it, its fud.  But its shocking and causes good conversation.  I feel like at first its negative but then as the conversation develops I see people start to use their brain.  The part that the videos don't want to win out - but the part that has them walk away slightly less happy with Microsoft and slightly more firm in their decision to use Google.
IMHO No normal people understands privacy issues, those who does, mostly don't care unless with other all this campaign is utter childish and nonsense, which Dont bear any fruit unless the products are better.
+Josh Armour I can't imagine the trend of users continuing to just throw aside privacy will continue forever. When that turns, Google's in a lot of trouble.
+Jake Weisz yes I am referring to the cloud services they offer. The stuff they point out about Google, they do similarly. I think the point of their advertisement is Google is not a great place for data if you care about your privacy. For the people who do care would be switching over for a similar product which would be a cloud service to replicate the Google cloud service they were using.

A quick example would be gmail. The scroogled campaign wants you to switch to an outlook account.  Emails received in both gmail & outlook services are scanned.
Your absolutely right +Jake Weisz I hadn't even considered getting a windows laptop until a Google fanboy shared the link, I didn't even know they had laptops in the same price range as chromebooks. 
+Franklin C If you value privacy, you shouldn't be using cloud services. Period. Microsoft has to offer cloud services for those that specifically want them, but I doubt that's where their "heart" is, and you can see that from their marketing directives.

+Jonathan Lopez While I personally wouldn't buy a Windows PC in the Chromebook price range, they'll run Chrome just as well as a Chromebook will.
+Jake Weisz  I think you are missing my point. The ads they are putting out are to attract people to their cloud services not what you would consider real software.

+Jonathan Lopez It depends on what your needs are in an OS. If you can use only a web browser the CB is a great device. No hassle like a windows pc. Also if it isn't a touch screen, windows 8 is not as good. If you are going that direction try something like ubuntu, mint or opensuse. Best of luck with your purchase.
+Franklin C That definitely depends on the ad. This ad was most certainly not promoting their cloud services. Microsoft is often criticized as a large company with branches that don't know what the others are doing. You can see that in their ads. I'm still angry that the Xbox department makes deals with publishers that hurt me as a Windows gamer.

In terms of, at least, their assurances are that any data scanning is only for your benefit, not theirs. For helping spam detection (something universally accepted) and sorting. I wouldn't use, I'd rather run a private mail server personally. Who it benefits is a big deal, whether it seems like it or not. Given how much value Google gets out of it's data mining, they have a lot of motivation to do increasingly shady things with it.
+Jake Weisz When you say "I can't imagine the trend of users continuing to just throw aside privacy" are you referring to users who'd rather see a targeted ad and have a service for free rather than pay for something they are used to getting for free?

If that's the case then I don't see the trend going away.  It's all fine and dandy to get your panties in a bunch over some ads on the web but its an entirely different thing to say "you know what, I'm gonna pay instead of seeing ads"..  

As far as privacy goes, I think that this is the only thing that really sticks for Google, so I don't see Google in any danger..  Aside from ads (which is arguably not a privacy violation) Google is pretty good about protecting users data.

For example - you can't buy user data from Google.  Even if you advertise on Google.  Try it if you think otherwise.  If you pay Google to show ads to men in their 30's who like Digital Cameras you will not get any user data from Google.  What you'll get is a report that says that it was shown to people who matched your criteria.  Pure and simple - you cant buy userdata - you can buy attention.

But that same example is not the case with other large advertising companies on the internet (I won't name names) but suffice it to say that you can get a list of email addresses by advertising on other networks.  Google protects privacy better than they do.

To get back to your original point - and to get off my soap box - I'd like to echo you're concern.  Yes, when people decide that they are tired of ads on the web - A lot of companies will have to rethink how they monetize.  But as long as people care about privacy Google will do just fine since they are a cut above the competition (Look at encryption track record, treatment of user data with third parties, bug reward programs, transparency reports, account dashboards with a plethora of privacy controls, etc)..
+Josh Armour Google has gone from being just poor at protecting user's data to outright reckless. While Google's former mentality seemed to be "privacy is only about securing your data from other parties, not about securing your data from Google", now Google's more than happy to hand out your personal phone number to anyone, for free!

Regarding their "encryption track record", I think the failure to encrypt data between datacenters speaks for itself. A colossal failure of epic proportions. One Google should be ashamed of.
I think you are misunderstanding something if you think Google is giving away peoples personal numbers. Lol

+Josh Armour KitKat's new dialer, with the features they're slating to add in 2013. Using phone numbers people provided to them for identity verification purposes only, and opting them in automatically to be handed out to any 4.4-powered Android phone which requests it. (As Google's announcement made it clear it's not just for people calling you, but people you're dialing out to as well.)

Millions of users entrusted Google with that information for one use only, but Google doesn't care. Google's committed to utilizing the data it has at it's disposal for their benefit, regardless the cost.
Look I'm not sure about that specific product (that hasn't even been released yet lol) but if it works like caller ID has worked for decades its opposite of what you are implying.

I can't just type a name into my landline phone and get a number - though I can with the white pages they put on everyone's door step.  No Caller ID that the landline phone companies operate works opposite of that, it puts a name on the numbers that are calling me.  A number I already have since either I'm dialing it or they are dialing me.

You see the difference right?  One is putting a name to a number that you already have and the other scenario is giving a private number when you only have the name.  I bet a large amount of people don't even understand how Caller ID works (and has for decades)..
+Josh Armour It doesn't just look like Caller ID, Google's announced it works when you dial out as well. Additionally, while Caller ID was limited to the... piecemeal of certain landline carriers, and never mobile phones, Google's database stands much closer to actual people's identities rather than "whoever owns the property this wire connects to".

On top of that, the biggest issue is that they're taking information people gave Google in confidence to send out to others. And not just by adding a name, but by providing a profile photo and a Google+ link. A massive clash of business and personal life.

Let me give you a scenario. Look at your average banker, lawyer, or realtor. They have to maintain a very professional work image. Suits and ties. Every business card, every published photo. However, on a social network, sure, they can be a little bit more casual. Now, our banker has an Android... 4.1 phone, let's be reasonable, he's not a Nexus fanboy. He's probably rolling with a Motorola. He has a Gmail account, and four years ago, he gave Google his phone number in case he forgets his password.

Now, Google has decided to show his casual profile photo to every 4.4 phone he calls, and every phone who calls him. Now his business contacts' first interaction with him is not a professional image. As our banker doesn't have KitKat, and doesn't follow Android news, he has no idea Google is doing this, so he never had a chance to opt out. He was never given that option, because he never knew Google was doing it. Google has hurt his business, and his image, and he doesn't even know. He trusted Google to keep his information private, but Google didn't.
Good point. I'm interested in seeing what actually launches.. I'd bet its not what people are actually speculating.. You make a compelling example though...
There are plenty of people who will love this service, but the problem is that Google has decided it's better to automatically opt everyone in. While an opt-in system is a terrible abuse of their users, it benefits Google to automatically drag in everyone who doesn't know about the service.

Sure, you can argue that the banker's own fault was having a more casual profile photo, but why should Google take away the personal/professional life barrier that most people use?

+Kenton Varda wrote a great post about the difference between privacy and access control. Google doesn't understand privacy, anyone who says they do doesn't understand privacy. They understand access control, which is something different. Privacy is, more often than not, obscurity. Privacy isn't created by having things "always not public", it's about not having them connected. But Google's business model is served by constantly connecting things that shouldn't always be connected. Like someone's phone number and their social profile.
+Josh Armour If it was an opt-in service, millions of Google fans would opt-in. But if we let Google launch this as it's been announced so far, we've already lost. I'm sure it won't take long for some enterprising miscreant to figure out how to farm the data from it.
+Jake Weisz It's important to understand the diversionary tactics that MS is using these days. That is indeed why I noted their new Scroogled antic but did not link to it. // MS appears to be the last of the majors to the ball game when it comes to encrypting inter-datacenter links. That said, the surveillance in question has taken place largely overseas, which introduces some logistical complications, and at the scale of these datacenters such encryption is anything but trivial along any number of vectors. Anyway, we know that every country with the technology to grab what they can from circuits that terminate or transit their countries will do so to the maximal extent of their domestic laws, so pervasive encryption makes sense. // Re the Android "Caller ID" controversy. First, at least as I understand it, it's not really a caller-ID at all in the normal sense of the way most people understand caller ID -- as a service to reveal the number of the party calling you -- thus allowing you (in theory at least) to call them back. That's apparently not what Android is doing. Nor is opt-in necessarily a panacea for such situations. I do agree that many users may have forgotten or not fully understood the connections between their phone number and advanced comm systems like this, and I personally feel it would be useful if users were presented with an initial  dialogue that reminded them of their current settings and an explanation of what they meant. As long as users are well informed about what their settings are, what their options are, and how they work, the chance of misunderstandings is kept low. We'll see what happens in the fullness of time!
+Lauren Weinstein Some of the encryption concern most certainly comes from expectation management. If you'd asked me a year ago how I figured Google ensured my data was secure between data centers, I would've told you I assumed it was encrypted really freaking well. I bet you'd get similar answers from most other people asked. We assumed Google would've done it. Google's constant assurances they take every precaution with data security should cover things like encryption by default.

There's a small number of people automatically opted out, but only because they recently opted out of something else, and are hence likely to know about this anyhow.

I don't feel Google can pretend to care about users having control of their data if Google practices default opt-in on new uses of their data, especially uses that reveal their data to others. Not just a notification, but requiring they take a clear action to opt in.
Hence why I didn't share the video or even a link to it.
"KitKat's new dialer, with the features they're slating to add in 2013. Using phone numbers people provided to them for identity verification purposes only, and opting them in automatically to be handed out to any 4.4-powered Android phone which requests it."

That feature/setting doesn't auto-propagate from the accounts security phone number, it's a separate setting altogether ( which is blank up until you go out of your way to confirm your number in the Hangouts app.

Technically it was opt in since  the dialog in Hangouts explicitly said it was for enabling reverse look up in Hangouts/across other Google services from the very beginning.
+Jake Weisz Conventional phone calls aren't encrypted between telco facilities, either. The underlying problem is that most assumptions about the security of leased or owned long haul circuits for U.S. services are based on the assumption of those circuits being in the U.S., where U.S. laws addressing those circuits apply. NSA (and Western counterparts) have long existed in a space where domestic communications by their own nationals receive a much higher degree of protection than foreign communications involving non-nationals. As I said, this goes back to telephony and telegraphy. (There are of course countries where domestic political telecom surveillance is pervasive, such as China and Russia to name just two.)

What complicated this dynamic is the rise of services that intermingle foreign and domestic communications and users, both through non-domestic datacenters and other ways. If you look at the overwhelming number of cases that relate to NSA, for example, you see that they were almost always targeting foreign comms -just as they always have, just as their counterparts do, and as Congress has long authorized - but found it difficult (or a hassle) to properly minimize in all cases (even at that, the bulk of the issues with telco metadata were technical due to roaming phones going in and out of the U.S., causing their status to keep changing).

So NSA, et al, say, look, Congress (or our King, or our Parliament, or whatever in any given country) orders us to monitor foreign communications, just as we've always done. But now  foreign communications is intermingled with domestic comms like never before. How do we fulfill our mandate? 

One way they try to do that is monitor everything they can where foreign comms may be present, and try filter out the domestic stuff. And if such comms are opportunistically available they consider it to be dereliction of duty not to do so.

Don't like this state of affairs?  Yeah, neither do I. But there's not going to be unilateral disarmament on this score by anyone, and a global verifiable agreement seems very unlikely.

So the best we can really do now, given the new realities of conflated comms, is to apply opportunistic encryption wherever we can, as it becomes practicable. Not to make targeted comms surveillance impossible, but rather to discourage mass comm surveillance (which tends to involve mostly innocent parties) by making it as expensive and time-consuming to perform as possible.
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