For Gmail you are the product?

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by AGX, Jan 10, 2016.

  1. AGX macrumors regular

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    #1
    Hi,

    here is see that a lot of people use Gmail as default mail address.

    But anyone know that Gmail use all every data to make $$$ and use you as a product?

    I think that we must be more conscious about privacy and stop to help Google and other like Yahoo and Microsoft to make $$$ with our data.
     
  2. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #2
    Yes, most people especially here on MR are aware that google scans your emails, to send targeted ads to you.
     
  3. AGX thread starter macrumors regular

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  4. chrfr macrumors 603

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    #4
    The only solution is to buy your email service from someone else. Anybody that's offering free email is doing something similar to what Google is doing.
     
  5. AGX thread starter macrumors regular

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  6. brofkand macrumors member

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    #6
    Fastmail.fm is one alternative.

    iCloud as well if you trust Apple with your data (I do). I forward my old Gmail and a few other accounts to iCloud, just so it's pushed to my iPhone and Mac. Many other services don't push to iPhone I've found.
     
  7. Tech198 macrumors G4

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    #7
    of course, u also have to put trust in them too.

    personally, i would rather trust Google, as long i know what personal info I give them is never real that could link to you.. I don't see a problem with this to main your own privacy. Your only violating terms & conditions which is not a crime.
     
  8. Rigby macrumors 601

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    #8
    I don't see how you can possibly use Gmail as your personal email service and not disclose your real name and other personal information to Google. Do you only email anonymously with friends, family, online shops etc?

    I'm pretty sure that Google does a lot more when scanning your emails than just targeting ads. E.g. the capabilities of context-aware services like Google Now require that they understand various types of emails such as receipts, ticket reservations, appointments etc. They probably build detailed profiles and know a lot more about you then you think, such as your address (from shop receipts), contacts (from people you mail with), travel plans (from airline receipts) etc. pp.

    I agree with what was said above: If you want real privacy, you'll have to either use a paid email service or one of the services that are dedicated to privacy such as Protonmail or Tutanota.
     
  9. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

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    #9
    And if you want real privacy you have to stop emailing anyone who's account is hosted by a data-mining company.
     
  10. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #10
    Easy, don't use gmail.

    As noted you are the product, google, facebook and other services are offering their services for free, but it costs them money so they need to make money somehow, and in google (facebook), they use you as the product for marketing.
    --- Post Merged, Jan 11, 2016 ---
    That's really the question, I don't expect google to protect my privacy because its in their best interest to not do that. They are using my online habits for marketing purposes. If the OP doesn't like what google does, then find a different provider, or set up his own email host.
     
  11. Tech198, Jan 11, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2016

    Tech198 macrumors G4

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    #11
    Its easy.. I use all fake info....

    To me, privacy ends with me... I know Google, you are the product, and in a business like that, u can not stay "private"

    However with me, it depends what i give them....

    They can sell all the info they like on me, since none of the info i fill out is real anyway...

    That's how i get round it..... If i can't defeat it... i play their game :p
     
  12. Maki Roc macrumors member

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    Aug 9, 2014
    #12
    Even if you use a different provider Google will scan your mail, because Gmail has a huge user base you can't avoid.
    Encrypting messages may be the only way to have some kind of privacy, but is an impractical solution for many.
    Personally I don't care that much that Gmail scans my mail. I more annoyed that they killed push in the default mail app. I've been trying to get off Gmail ever since
     
  13. Rigby macrumors 601

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    #13
    You use fake info in all emails that you send or receive? I find that hard to believe.
     
  14. Alrescha macrumors 68020

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    #14
    I have an email address that I use for dealing with people who use gmail. Even that doesn't cover all the possibilities, but one does what one can.

    A.
     
  15. kdarling, Jan 11, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2016

    kdarling macrumors demi-god

    kdarling

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    #15
    Of course.

    Are you also aware that Apple uses our iTunes info and purchases and location to sell iAds?

    Or that Apple has made over a billion dollars a year pimping us out to Google Search on iOS devices?

    Customers are the product for everyone, not just Google.

    On the contrary, it's totally in Google's interest to keep our info private. That is, after all, how they make money, by offering anonymous ad slots based on their private computerized knowledge of our target demographics.

    If they revealed who we were, the future value of the info would be lost.

    It's not the Apples or the Googles of the world that people have to worry about. They have incentive to keep our data private.

    It's the hundreds or thousands of smaller data scrapers that DO attempt to match us up and sell who we are, and what our address is for flyers etc, who are the real daily threat.

    Sure, just like Apple has built detailed profiles about its users. Although in their case, it's even less understandable, as they have plenty of revenue from other sources. Most people know that Google makes most of its money from ads in return for offering valuable services to everyone.

    Another difference is that Google allows us to peek behind the curtain and see what slots we've been put into for ads. You can even modify them, which is very handy when you finally buy that new car and don't want to see car ads any more :)

    For those who've never looked at their Google data or controls, you should. Just sign into your dashboard:

    https://www.google.com/dashboard/

    Under Account, choose Manage Account.

    Under Ad Settings, Manage Ad Settings, you can see what slots they've put you into. Many of us often have the wrong sex, age, and old interests.

    Under other settings, you can control if they keep your location and so forth. That's how Google Now learns where we work and when to warn us about traffic etc. Delete on the risk of losing that extra automated assistance.

    Likewise, similar to how Apple does per device, Google keeps random voice samples globally to make voice control work better. One time I decided to remove all that stored info (years of it), and was sorry I did. It took a while to learn my voice again.
     
  16. Alrescha, Jan 11, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2016

    Alrescha macrumors 68020

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    #16
    I'm sorry, but no. Customers are important to every company certainly, but Google is primarily an advertiser and as such we are literally their product. We are what they sell to their customers. That is not true for Apple, regardless of the fact that they make a tiny percentage of their revenue from iAds.

    With Apple we are primarily the customer, and Apple's incentives are to keep us happy and buying their products.

    A.
     
  17. Rigby macrumors 601

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    #17
    I'm sure they do.
    Well, the same is true for Microsoft. They have plenty of other revenue sources too, but are taking the data collection and mining to new levels in Windows 10. At least they still don't seem to be targeting ads based on the content of our emails though (which doesn't necessarily mean they aren't scanning them).
    Somehow, that doesn't make me feel any better about it.

    I really hope that email services like Protonmail and Tutanota with true end-to-end encryption will be successful. These days email is such a crucial part of our lives that there should really be strong privacy protections. Since the lawmakers are far behind the technical developments, technical means seem to be the only way to achieve that.
     
  18. Tech198 macrumors G4

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    #18
    If its to non-family members ..yes.. but its on as a "per email" basis.... I decide what goes in when i email.... that way i have full control... As i said, while its not perfect, the info that real is already public anyway... eg. your adrdress when u sign up to an ISP, your street address when search on Google maps,, is all public..somewhat.... (or at least its out of my hands), so i deem that as public info.
     
  19. Rigby macrumors 601

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    #19
    Well, if you have ever sent or received a single email with your real name in it, Google theoretically knows who you are. If you ever used search, Youtube or any of their other services without clearing the Google cookies first, they can connect you to those services too (and perhaps they can even do it without cookies if your IP address doesn't change often). By cross-correlating information from a multitude of sources (a field that they have mastered like no other company), they can build a very detailed profile about you.
     
  20. Ulenspiegel macrumors 68030

    Ulenspiegel

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    #20
    I guess quite a few people are aware that Google is a data miner. This is the reason - amongst others - why I don't use any of their services (except search) and left the Android world some months ago.

    @AGX: use Tutanota or ProtonMail.
     
  21. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #21
    I disagree, I really don't think privacy, and protecting consumers is really high on Google's list. The do no evil they used go by was laughable. If they were so privacy minded, why did they fight (and continue to fight) the EU's right to be forgotten rule (law?)
     
  22. kdarling, Jan 12, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2016

    kdarling macrumors demi-god

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    #22
    I didn't say privacy was in their interest. Obviously the more they know, the better they can serve both the user (e.g. Google Now, smart searches, etc) and the advertisers.

    I said it was totally in their interest to keep the data they have, private. They don't sell that data:

    The whole reason Google and Apple and the banks and anyone else with our private data can make money off that data, is because that data is kept secret.

    Surely you know by now that advertisers are not given names or access to the data. Instead, they specify what target market they want their ads to be seen by, and then Google / Apple / whoever serves that ad to those markets. It's anonymous ad slotting.

    Google does comply with it, but imagine how much it must slow down searches if they first must throw out hundreds of thousands of combinations which match someone's "I don't want others to see that in a search" request.

    It's not a "Right to be Forgotten". It's not wanting to be found in a search of public information. Some of the first people to take advantage of it were criminals, pedophiles, violent spouses, tax dodgers, etc. It's to their advantage to have their names removed from search results, but not to society's advantage. Entire pieces of history and background checks will have search holes.

    Not to mention that it opens the door to related requests. What if someday MacRumors was required by a similar law, to remove any search results that people don't like? Imagine if MacRumors had to remove any search results that pointed to someone ever predicting that Apple would never make a phone larger than 4"? What if every member did that? Does MacRumors... which, like Google, is a for-profit site supported by targeted ads... think that's worth supporting in their forum code?

    Such a law doesn't even make common sense. Remember, it doesn't remove the source material. It simply forces search engines to remove any matching results. (Actually, force is the wrong word. Search engines are free to deny every single request, and make the person take the request to the government or courts to decide if it's a valid request or not. Google should've done that, IMO. Let the lawmakers take responsibility for their own 1984-ish creation.)
     
  23. Tech198, Mar 15, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2016

    Tech198 macrumors G4

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    #23
    Then u don't know just how far i would go to say "privacy is not dead" :) You name is not private..

    Every-time i use Google, i know i'm the product, that why i *don't* provide any I don't wanna give them...

    Except for my mobile for 2-factor, there are plenty of (other) ways if they want this info,,, but they won' t it from *me*

    If that's a problem for any company, live with it. Plus, i cut that down by surfing in private browsing.

    Besides, if Google asked u to pay to use Gmail, no one would, since we want it free...... so they know targeting ads is better business.
     
  24. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

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    #24
    It's not unlike the way TV has been in the USA since the beginning. The viewer is the product for which advertisers pay broadcasters to access. It's more intrusive than ever with the cable companies abilities to monitor everything individuals do on their boxes.
     
  25. throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

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    #25
    Yes.

    As you are with Facebook, your credit card issuer, etc.
     

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