http://www.twitlonger.com/show/bt2p2o

The scandal of the day. Lots of resharing and discussions today. The short version is that he violated ToS on his personal gmail account, was locked out and appears to be confusing that with access to his free GApps account. These two threads show real Google advisors giving him way more support than normal. +Danny Sullivan nailed it by pointing out how good customer service only happens when you create a firestorm on some social entwork. https://plus.google.com/113217924531763968801/posts/6KfgwwjDUWz

For the details on this particular guy go here


http://www.google.com/support/forum/p/Google+Apps/thread?tid=76af592c405c567a&hl=en

and here

http://www.google.com/support/forum/p/Google+Apps/thread?tid=24d84a07b7b1e9d7&hl=en
Google is pretty confident that this guy violated the ToS on his gmail account. His additional statements about his Google Apps account do not appear to be accurate.

I personally don't care about this person. Whether he was wronged or is an inveterate spammer or worse doesn't matter.

This episode highlights concerns with the increasing dependency on 3rd parties for concepts as vital as identity. The real problem is that we routinely mistake authentication for identity. Google provides an authentication service but other services (like twitter) use that as if it was identity.

+Tantek Çelik is probably smiling wryly at this entire mess. We're a long way from a world when everyone can be and is responsible their own online presence. Unlike the real world we lack alternatives when it comes to online access and presence. If someone blocks my driveway I can always walk out the back of my property and across my neighbour's yard.

In the mean time, Google needs to come clean on the fact that they are a landlord. Even if they don't charge rent, the data in a locked account belongs to the user, not Google. Google Takeout is a perfectly valid solution to the problem. No you can't access your account but feel free to vacate the premises in the next 90 days or we'll toss your crap forever.
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