I ran across the video below in my wanderings and it stoked my long term malaise about Google. To put a finer point on it, I love Google products. I am just terrified of the digital profile Google has of me based on my usage. How do I use Google?
- Google Search leads me to what I need and at the same time means that Google knows what is on my mind at any given time.
- GMAIL handles my personal email and they therefore know what I am corresponding with friends about
- Google Apps for business handles my businesss mail, so there is the busiess interactions and for good measure, lots of proprietary information about my organizaiton.
- Google Analytics tells me who comes to my website and what they look at, so now they know that as well.
- Google Reader collects what I read nicely and means that Google knows what interests me and what I actually read (as opposed to what I claim to read.)
- Google Shopping is a great place to find the current pricing on an item I want to buy and it gives Google a nice view into what I am buying.
- Google Voice (formerly GrandCentral) provides me my phone service and means that if I don’t answer, the Google services know just what someone is call me about (though they have a terrible time transcribing it.)
- Google+ gives me a place to be social and gives them all sorts of information about me
Does Google actually compile this information to draw a picture of who I am? No, they aren’t but if they did the results would be scary… or perhaps a really good boyfriend.