[SATLUG] Old thread but is Google still your frin?

Don Davis dondavis at reglue.org
Sat Aug 7 09:23:05 CDT 2010

This is a very interesting topic that calls into question much of what
gets debated today. <please, I don't want to start this thread> Some
people would argue that corporations are entitled to representation like
individuals. The counter argument is, whereas I can be held accountable
with jail time for reckless endangerment and manslaughter if my actions
lead to the death of 20 people. A corporation is not, They pay a fine
which represents less than a year's profit.</thread>

What does this have to do with search engines?  A search engine or any
website can identify your browsers unique finger print (without your ip
address).  Your ISP has even more accurate records about what your IP
address was at a given time. They are also your default DNS resolver -
they know everywhere you go.

Google knows my searches. I even enable it through logging in. I'm
usually looking for Linux info or peer reviewed educational research.
For google to know this helps. It can even help more than keywords in
the searches sometimes. What's the problem? This can be done for
everything. Scenario: Hardworking politician and family man likes to
stay current with the latest info about "ladies in bikinis." He thinks
nothing of it. Later he is accused of corruption, etc... All his search
records are subpoena'ed from Google and his ISP. How does he look when
they discover that he loaded more than 3000 images from
bikiniladies.com? Also, which Google books did he browse through? It's
not pertinent, but it does make him look bad.

On 08/07/2010 12:28 AM, Bruce Dubbs wrote:
> herb cee wrote:
>> Hey guys and gals. who really understands this latest rumour that the
>> goog is turning evil.
>> My window to the world is the internet, I get plenty of lies there
>> too, but fairly easy to filter out.
>> Just how does a low end user .5gig DSL affect me. is this just to do
>> with streaming video and hi-bandwidth uses or does it trully put my
>> freedom of info at risk?
>> Thanks for some discussion to enlighten me?
> Thee are two issues here.
> 1.  Net-neutrality.  Should a vendor like Time-Warner or AT&T have the
> authority to shape the throughput according to protocol or content.
> There are a couple of sub-issues here.  If everyone is streaming HDTV
> signals over the Internet, does it get saturated?  I think the case can
> be made for things like cell phones.  For fiber connections, not so much.
> Should a vendor be able/forced to pay for priority connections or
> delivery of content?  Should everyone be entitled to 'unlimited' downloads?
> For companies like Time-Warner, the motivations are mixed because they
> are a content creator too.  Also, if everyone is downloading via the
> Internet, it cuts into TW's cable TV revenues.
> I take no position here, but am just pointing out the issues.
> 2.  Google and it's applications have the ability to collect a lot of
> information about your browsing habits.  Almost every computer has a
> different Web fingerprint.  How does this ability affect things like
> free speech?  Are people inhibited in their political discussions?  I
> can answer that some people definitely feel restrained because of the
> potential of electronic systems monitoring everything.  See, for
> instance, the book 1984.  It is practical now and in places like North
> Korea, a reality.
> Also see the movie "Enemy of the State".
> The question is whether Google's capability is being misused.  We know
> it *can* be misused.  Different people will disagree about the what data
> can be reasonably collected and how that data is used.
>   -- Bruce

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