Consumer watchdogs tear into Google’s new e-mail service: If you don’t know why critics are having a problem with this service, see this post.
I would just say, “If you don’t like it, don’t use it,” but the system scans incoming email as well. So I have to say, “If you don’t like it, don’t use it and don’t email anyone who uses it. ”
However with email redirects, you can’t tell where email you send is going to end up, so how can you tell what email you send will be scanned by Google? Sticky questions.
“Consumers really need to look this gift horse in the mouth because it has rotten teeth and bad breath,” said Beth Givens, director of the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, a watchdog group.
The Gmail backlash has inspired Orwellian comparisons likening Google to Big Brother, a disturbing development for a privately held company committed to making money “without doing evil.”
Essentially GMail is a big bribe. Google is saying, “We know this system is creepy, but we give you one gigabyte of storage.” They’re counting on the fact that the downside of email scanning is offset by the generous storage limits. I guess it’s up to the consumer to decide if this is true.
Personally, I’ve never looked at email as being terrifically private anyway. Unless you encrypt your stuff, pretty much assume that anyone can read it whenever they like.