If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(Slate)   Can you live without Google? What if they suspended your account without explanation?   (slate.com) divider line 125
    More: Scary, Google, recorded message, Googleplex, ether, Google Reader, Google Voice, explanations  
•       •       •

7394 clicks; posted to Geek » on 25 Apr 2013 at 2:10 AM (51 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



125 Comments   (+0 »)
   
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

Archived thread

First | « | 1 | 2 | 3 | » | Last | Show all
 
2013-04-25 07:59:06 AM
It would not affect me in the least.

If my gmail were to shut down - no problem. Whenever I get an email, I have my account set up to automatically print, fold, stuff into an envelope, add postage, and mail to my own PO Box. That way I won't lose my data.
 
2013-04-25 08:10:10 AM

paswa17: It would not affect me in the least.

If my gmail were to shut down - no problem. Whenever I get an email, I have my account set up to automatically print, fold, stuff into an envelope, add postage, and mail to my own PO Box. That way I won't lose my data.


You sound like one of the over-55s people I know that makes over $100,000 annually...

1. Print out email.
2. Write response on print out.
3. Send it back via inter-office snail mail.
 
2013-04-25 08:29:20 AM
Is this like the Xbox banning forums where people go and say how unjustly they were banned from Live only to have a moderator say how they had installed a mod or were told time and time again to stop making gamer tags that have to deal about sex and drugs.
 
2013-04-25 08:33:13 AM

TNel: Is this like the Xbox banning forums where people go and say how unjustly they were banned from Live only to have a moderator say how they had installed a mod or were told time and time again to stop making gamer tags that have to deal about sex and drugs.


Nope this was just a matter of the user had a spreadsheet of login info for stuff they manage and google decided that was suspicious and disabled the whole account over it.  Nothing to see here, just google snooping around a person's data and decided they didn't like what they saw despite it being perfectly legit.  Nothing to see at all.
 
2013-04-25 08:36:44 AM

gwowen: steveGswine: Another thing to file under "shiat Microsoft will not ever ever do to you".  Because Microsoft doesn't have users, it has business partners.

I think its safe to safe to that XBox Live has users, not business partners.
And they absolutely will banninate you for breaching the ToS.

/ Rightly so, too


If you're somehow jamming the information you use to run your client relationships into your XBox, you already have a fragile approach to your days.

And if you read the Terms and Conditions that Microsoft legal puts out, after working with every business in the world for a quarter century, you won't have the problems TFA discusses about the T&C "offer[ing] few clues" about why they felt like you were in breach of the agreement.
 
2013-04-25 08:46:23 AM
If the service is free, you are not the customer. You are the product.
 
2013-04-25 08:49:27 AM

gingerjet: TheOmni: I'm still hoping that Google decides to return to their "Don't be evil" motto, but realistically I don't have that much hope. I'm very slowly trying to at least somewhat separate myself from my dependence on Google. I purchased a domain name so I could get my own email address. But I manage it through Google Apps and forward it to my existing gmail inbox. So that's like half a step in the right direction.

"Don't be evil" was just lip service to get legions of geeks to give all their data to Google.

/if you don't back up your data or have an alternative way to contact you - you deserve to get fark'd over


Actually, 'don't be evil' was about how they treat their employees, not their customers.
 
2013-04-25 08:50:10 AM
Just stay away from Google+ with any browser you have used to log in Youtube or other Google services.

They'll associate that shiat right up and start demanding you use Google+, and want you to verify and use publicly, your real name.
 
2013-04-25 08:58:09 AM

steveGswine: And if you read the Terms and Conditions that Microsoft legal puts out, after working with every business in the world for a quarter century


Until very recently, MS sold softwares licenses (effectively in perpetuity) and support contracts. The licenses are useful, but come with as little warranty as provided by law, and the services that Microsoft provide contract customers those Google provide in those cases aren't really comparable.

That leaves the Software-as-Service lot:L HotMail, SkyDrive etc, which is governed by a Code of conduct. And if you break the terms of that code, they will lock your account. Oh and one of the things you mustn't do is:
invades anyone's privacy by attempting to harvest, collect, store, or publish private or personally identifiable information, such as passwords, account information, credit card numbers, addresses, or other contact information without their knowledge and willing consent.

Which is exactly what this guy was perceived to have done.
 
2013-04-25 09:02:25 AM
Google is looking more and more like it's going to take a turn for the worse very soon.  I've been trying to use bing from time to time to familiarize myself with it.  Bing is clearly inferior, but it's fit for purpose most of the time.
 
2013-04-25 09:02:37 AM

LazarusLong42: If the service is free, you are not the customer. You are the product.


Well, that's kinda true, but as NBC are finding out, if you don't treat the product with a modicum respect, supply will run out.  And if you don't have any product, it doesn't matter who the customers are.
 
2013-04-25 09:02:59 AM

BumpInTheNight: Nope this was just a matter of the user had a spreadsheet of login info for stuff they manage and google decided that was suspicious and disabled the whole account over it. Nothing to see here, just google snooping around a person's data and decided they didn't like what they saw despite it being perfectly legit. Nothing to see at all.


That's what bugs me.  Google should not be looking at the contents of my Excel documents, whether it was done by an automated process or a nosy engineer.  Fark that noise.

Author or the article needs to tell all her clients that their passwords have been compromised and to change them.  And then stop uploading that kind of document to any online storage service unencrypted.
 
2013-04-25 09:05:13 AM
Yea, I uh.... I don't really get a whole lot of value in my GMail account and I don't really use any of their other services except search. I've had that account since early beta, but I'd get over it pretty quickly.
 
2013-04-25 09:05:44 AM
Can someone shop Google in here:

www.ethannonsequitur.com
 
2013-04-25 09:14:48 AM

gwowen: LazarusLong42: If the service is free, you are not the customer. You are the product.

Well, that's kinda true, but as NBC are finding out, if you don't treat the product with a modicum respect, supply will run out.  And if you don't have any product, it doesn't matter who the customers are.


Free may mean $0, but there are non-monetary costs to free things and the rules of economics still apply. You still pay Google (and other free services) in some way. They need that form of payment for survival as much as they need money for survival. That's why I had the little piggy comic. It's a lack of understanding of economics.
 
2013-04-25 09:19:39 AM

gwowen: steveGswine: And if you read the Terms and Conditions that Microsoft legal puts out, after working with every business in the world for a quarter century

Until very recently, MS sold softwares licenses (effectively in perpetuity) and support contracts. The licenses are useful, but come with as little warranty as provided by law, and the services that Microsoft provide contract customers those Google provide in those cases aren't really comparable.

That leaves the Software-as-Service lot:L HotMail, SkyDrive etc, which is governed by a Code of conduct. And if you break the terms of that code, they will lock your account. Oh and one of the things you mustn't do is:
invades anyone's privacy by attempting to harvest, collect, store, or publish private or personally identifiable information, such as passwords, account information, credit card numbers, addresses, or other contact information without their knowledge and willing consent.

Which is exactly what this guy was perceived to have done.


If you were able to determine that storing passwords was a violation of the Microsoft agreement that you read, and the guy in TFA was not able to determine that was a violation of the Google agreement even after a very motivated reading, that's an important difference between the two services.

Again: Microsoft treats you like a business partner, Google treats you like a user.
 
2013-04-25 09:26:07 AM
I've had two GMail accounts since back when they first opened it to the public invite-only beta.  I'd miss those a bit but I've had Yahoo email as a backup all these years for just that reason.

Bing is tolerable, but I've been getting back into Yahoo recently.  The mail isn't as annoying as it used to be, or their site (yes I know it's powered by Bing), and their newest mobile apps are fantastic (the weather one, seriously check it out).

So yeah, I could live without Google but I'd rather not.
 
2013-04-25 09:30:49 AM

jonny_q: gwowen: LazarusLong42: If the service is free, you are not the customer. You are the product.

Well, that's kinda true, but as NBC are finding out, if you don't treat the product with a modicum respect, supply will run out.  And if you don't have any product, it doesn't matter who the customers are.

Free may mean $0, but there are non-monetary costs to free things and the rules of economics still apply. You still pay Google (and other free services) in some way. They need that form of payment for survival as much as they need money for survival. That's why I had the little piggy comic. It's a lack of understanding of economics.


Why, the comic captures it perfectly. It just doesn't talk about the fact that money indeed changes hand. The piggy is just not part of the process or, rather, it is part of that process as the product not as the giver or receiver of the money.
 
2013-04-25 09:36:35 AM
This is why I have a "backup" Google account that has at least read access to most of these things:

http://googlesystem.blogspot.com/2007/12/creating-backup-for-your-go og le-account.html
 
2013-04-25 09:38:34 AM
Well why not store all this stuff with Google?  After all, in various 'Cloud' threads we've had people running around lecturing us on just how god damn awesome the whole thing is, so safe and secure, always available and naturally you don't need to backup everything to anywhere else because it's all in 'the Cloud'.

So this person totally brought in to that hype.

If we're now saying that the cloud has all the problems associated with local storage (either direct comparisons or of equal severity) and that it can get: hacked, suffer availability issues, might not do exactly what it says on the tin, randomly vanish for no apparent or logical reason...  then what's the point in using it over local storage?
 
2013-04-25 09:42:12 AM
Suspend my account, Google? Bing it on!

But, yeah... that would suck.
 
2013-04-25 09:51:11 AM
back to Webcrawler?

www.java-forums.org
 
2013-04-25 10:22:00 AM

digistil: paswa17: It would not affect me in the least.

If my gmail were to shut down - no problem. Whenever I get an email, I have my account set up to automatically print, fold, stuff into an envelope, add postage, and mail to my own PO Box. That way I won't lose my data.

You sound like one of the over-55s people I know that makes over $100,000 annually...

1. Print out email.
2a. Write response on print out.

Dictate response for secretary to write out
2b. Staple printed email and written response together
3. Send it back via inter-office snail mail.

That's how I roll
 
2013-04-25 10:22:22 AM
There are SO many search engines out there..............


/would not miss it at all
 
2013-04-25 10:23:31 AM
If this news gets spread, I expect someone's head to roll at Google. Google wants people to trust them with their information and use their services, and if people think that engineers will go through their private information and documents and make irrational decisions based on what they find, people will jump ship.

If this is true and gets out, expect a huge PR campaign from them to rebuild trust.
 
2013-04-25 10:38:34 AM

Esroc: I can't understand why anyone would rely solely on the cloud in the first place. Cloud computing is pointless in a world where you can carry all your data on encryptable keychains that keep shrinking.


Non technical people finally rid themselves of those smelly awful negative nellies in IT. All I have to do is upload this to a magical web site and its stored? I don't have to maintain a server cluster or patch everything or worry about viruses? What happy times are these!! Joyous rapture!! The end of IT as we know it!!

Its hilarious watching dumbf0cks who shed all technical knowhow beyond "how to operate a browser" stumble learning basic IT. Good luck fellas. I'm sure that preso wasn't that important anyway. Did you have payroll on that missing laptop, or just the sales decks? I'm sure there's no fines for causing an ID theft, they never figure out who caused that stuff anyway.
 
2013-04-25 10:44:39 AM

BumpInTheNight: So in the end it turns out her spreadsheet contained login info for a client's servers and other online accounts, the client actively worked with her to make this file and put it on google drive.  It must have tripped some new anti-hackery initiative where google is reading through your spreadsheets looking for sinister words like 'password'...you know just google's usual trawling through everything you store in their service, reading all your stuff and you know, the usual.  Nothing to see here, just google reading your stuff again.  No big.

yikes, google why you so evil now?


WTF? How could they be so stupid!? Your client just farked security and Google is the one that is evil!?

Who the fark uses any Cloud service as their sole repository for contact info, calendars, or to store data? Are there really a whole lot of people ignorant of basic data storage and back up procedures?
 
2013-04-25 10:45:34 AM

HotWingAgenda: ZeroCorpse: GWSuperfan: "My data was intact save for the last thing I'd worked on-a spreadsheet containing a client's account numbers and passwords. It seems that Google's engineers determined this single document violated policy and locked down my entire account. "

I'll tell you this much- if I was a client of this asshole, and found out that he had my account # and password in a spreadsheet that he was storing on a cloud service, I'd cease to be a client right quick.

I'd say Google did this guy's clients a favor.

What has me a bit confused is how they found this info. Did they look at the contents of the spreadsheet and then freeze the account? Was there something in the file name that alerted them? Do they make a habit of reading the actual contents of work stored in Google Docs? Isn't there some sort of privacy issue to be concerned about here?!?!

He didn't actually say that the contents of the spreadsheet was what got him suspended.  Only that it's the only document Google refuses to give back, and that he needs it because it has all his client info.  No explanation for why he would store all of his clients' passwords in a spreadsheet on a Google server, though.


He's basically announcing to the world he has no concept of an NDA or client-contractor privacy.

Google absolutely does read everything you put on their platform. They're constantly scanning emails, goog docs etc .. for marketing buzzwords and other initiatives.

It probably had things in it that matched a metric google had faith in its own processes enough that it tripped a "lock out" feature. Why this is, goog won't say. Goog is under no legal requirement to say. You trusted goog with your stuff, dumbf0ck.
 
2013-04-25 10:47:37 AM

The Stealth Hippopotamus: This.

I didn't know you could have a google account.

Now if some touched my Amazon account.....

The horror the horror


So show us on the doll where they touched your Amazon account.
 
2013-04-25 10:55:43 AM

GWSuperfan: "My data was intact save for the last thing I'd worked on-a spreadsheet containing a client's account numbers and passwords. It seems that Google's engineers determined this single document violated policy and locked down my entire account. "

I'll tell you this much- if I was a client of this asshole, and found out that he had my account # and password in a spreadsheet that he was storing on a cloud service, I'd cease to be a client right quick.

I'd say Google did this guy's clients a favor.


Quoted for truth. Hopefully he reads up on best practices for storing sensitive user data, especially passwords. You're supposed to salt, hash or otherwise obfuscate/scramble that kind of shiat so that nobody but the user can know what it is. You never know what kind of person might have access to that data in the future and people tend to use the same password for a lot of systems like banks and Facebook. At the very least don'f put it on a farking cloud service.
 
2013-04-25 10:57:12 AM
I am not sure why he did not have Google Drive on his computer.  If that was the case all the documents would have had local copies that could be accessed.  This would have led to at least some access to the data.
 
2013-04-25 10:58:08 AM
I'd pay someone else for email and change my MX records?
 
2013-04-25 11:00:25 AM

mctwin2kman: I am not sure why he did not have Google Drive on his computer.  If that was the case all the documents would have had local copies that could be accessed.  This would have led to at least some access to the data.


With my iPad, I'm more productive than someone with a laptop or desktop.  Who needs local storage -- that's so last century.
 
2013-04-25 11:19:17 AM

Altair: I would lose of my ex-gf's nudes. brb, backing up now


"Real men don't backup. They upload their stuff to the internet and let the world mirror it for them." -- Linus Torvalds
 
2013-04-25 11:23:08 AM
I run my own mail/web/cloud servers.  Takes very little effort.  It's worth it.
 
2013-04-25 11:27:29 AM

Slaves2Darkness: WTF? How could they be so stupid!? Your client just farked security and Google is the one that is evil!?

Who the fark uses any Cloud service as their sole repository for contact info, calendars, or to store data? Are there really a whole lot of people ignorant of basic data storage and back up procedures?


Let's try this again:  Why is google reading your spread sheet and deciding to lock your account over it containing a field called 'password'.  Yes, putting a list of passwords on the internet isn't a brilliant move.  But what is google doing going around locking people's accounts because of benign things like the word password being present, worse why are they flagging on that word period, they want to know if your doc has the word password in it for some reason... RED FLAG.

Ignore the stupid sysadmin move, that's not the cause for alarm.  Why is google reading your spreadsheet for passwords and then only giving you access after one of their staff reads that file.  Reads your password, knowing it contains passwords.
 
2013-04-25 11:44:48 AM
But they should run the entire internet.
/Yes it's people on here that think that
 
2013-04-25 11:50:35 AM
Startpage.com
 
2013-04-25 11:51:52 AM
There is an explanation.
It's been emailed to your Gmail account.
 
2013-04-25 11:53:51 AM
For 12 bucks every 3 months you can register your own domain, have literally hundreds of email accounts, lots of storage space, and your own blog.

Other than for throw away email addresses for signing up for web sites, why use google ?
 
2013-04-25 12:01:37 PM

RickN99: With my iPad, I'm more productive than someone with a laptop or desktop.


I agree.  Fruit Ninja is much easier on a tablet.
 
2013-04-25 12:08:14 PM

OnlyM3: For 12 bucks every 3 months you can register your own domain, have literally hundreds of email accounts, lots of storage space, and your own blog.

Other than for throw away email addresses for signing up for web sites, why use google ?


What domain registrar and webhost do you use?
 
2013-04-25 12:12:10 PM

heavymetal: FTFA: I had assumed it never happened at all. Sure, it had occurred to me when I had moved my work and memories into the "cloud" that I was relying on other people to keep them safe on their servers. But I figured a company with $50 billion in revenues and the modest aim to "organize the world's information" had to run a tight ship. Anyway, it seemed implicit that in allowing Google to use my data, I could rely on Google to hold on to it-and to give it back.

There is your mistake right there dude. Do not have 100% faith in a commercial entity because you are really nothing to them; especially a company that is doing well and kind of has a vast default customer base thanks to a the Android OS. I will never understand "fanboys". While it doesn't imply he is a "fanboy" of Google, his actions and total faith in Google does. It's no different with Apple. Both have interlinked their services with their products to the point if you become too dependent on the products or services of either company, you are actually giving up and giving to them control over an aspect of your life.

Heck if Apple decides you did something wrong they can disable your iTunes account and you lose the rights to all the music you got through iTunes. Truth is unlike a CD you are not buying the music, just the right to listen to it which they can revoke at any time.

While I understand the concept and convenience of "cloud computing" and its advantages I also understand the downsides, and I would never use anyone's "cloud service" as my primary data storage place for anything. Physical computer storage is just too cheap to buy to be dependent on any company.


If APL shuts down your account, you lose access to EVERYTHING.  Media, apps, access to your device (especially on factory reset, where you *NEED* an account to even start using the phone for it's phone purposes).

If Google shuts down your account, your Android phone will happily continue to work (even after factory reset -- you don't need to log into an account until you try to use Google services), and all built in services can be easily and seamlessly replaced with alternatives (Amazon Store, Garmin GPS software, etc.)

This is why I'm a fan of Google; I see their user-facing persona and I like it (Dashboard tells you what they have on you, and it's easy to switch in and out of their services if I ever deem them "evil", etc)
 
2013-04-25 12:18:35 PM
FTA "but it also reserves the right to discontinue services, the means to access it, whenever it wants"

Is this person new to the internet or something?  Because you can be banned from using just about any website or internet service under the same terms.

I'd be more interested in exactly how he had that Google Doc with his clients passwords and information secured on Google Docs.  Because if he chose to publish it to either his friends or publicly, then that's a clear violation of the terms of use of Google Documents, and certainly a liability issue.

BumpInTheNight: Why is google reading your spreadsheet for passwords and then only giving you access after one of their staff reads that file.


Depends on how it was published, again if this guy was stupid enough to publish it publicly on Google Docs, than anyone can read or search for it.  I assume that they routinely scan that information with an automated program to make sure there isn't adult content, illegal activities, or confidential information that may be a liability to their service.  Google will unlikely comment on it and I don't think this guy would admit to storing that information publicly (if in fact he did) and without that information it would be impossible to make an assumption one way or another.
 
2013-04-25 12:20:18 PM

BumpInTheNight: Slaves2Darkness: WTF? How could they be so stupid!? Your client just farked security and Google is the one that is evil!?

Who the fark uses any Cloud service as their sole repository for contact info, calendars, or to store data? Are there really a whole lot of people ignorant of basic data storage and back up procedures?

Let's try this again:  Why is google reading your spread sheet and deciding to lock your account over it containing a field called 'password'.  Yes, putting a list of passwords on the internet isn't a brilliant move.  But what is google doing going around locking people's accounts because of benign things like the word password being present, worse why are they flagging on that word period, they want to know if your doc has the word password in it for some reason... RED FLAG.

Ignore the stupid sysadmin move, that's not the cause for alarm.  Why is google reading your spreadsheet for passwords and then only giving you access after one of their staff reads that file.  Reads your password, knowing it contains passwords.


I assume because that is what the user agreed to when they agreed to use Google. What you didn't read the EULA well guess who just got farked.
 
2013-04-25 12:21:12 PM

TheOmni: I'm still hoping that Google decides to return to their "Don't be evil" motto, but realistically I don't have that much hope. I'm very slowly trying to at least somewhat separate myself from my dependence on Google. I purchased a domain name so I could get my own email address. But I manage it through Google Apps and forward it to my existing gmail inbox. So that's like half a step in the right direction.


5 bucks/month can get you on a basic mail server w/ webmail interface using your domain name.  To me it's worth it to know that I have control over my own info.
 
2013-04-25 12:23:36 PM
Pretty sure I've got most of my appstore programs backed up as .apks somewhere, so, not much. I have gmail/google+/etc account(s?), I just don't really use them beyond the app store on my phone.
 
2013-04-25 12:25:20 PM

OnlyM3: For 12 bucks every 3 months you can register your own domain, have literally hundreds of email accounts, lots of storage space, and your own blog.

Other than for throw away email addresses for signing up for web sites, why use google ?


This. I have an unusual name so my email address is firstname at lastname dot com. And you can created throwaway addresses, even unique to each time you use them. I sometimes get spam that I can then trace to the one specific place I gave that address to and emailed them about it.
 
2013-04-25 12:26:16 PM
sammyk:  I don't know, maybe I would create another account.

And you could probably use the same real name and address as your previous account and it wouldn't get noticed.
 
2013-04-25 12:26:40 PM

RickN99: With my iPad, I'm more productive than someone with a laptop or desktop. Who needs local storage -- that's so last century.


Funny thing is that people believe that
/Had shout one down yesterday
 
Displayed 50 of 125 comments

First | « | 1 | 2 | 3 | » | Last | Show all

View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest


This thread is closed to new comments.

Continue Farking
Submit a Link »






Report