The Google Limits

There is nothing wrong with your computer terminal. Do not attempt to adjust the picture. We are controlling this blog. If we wish to make it louder, we will bring up the volume. If we wish to make it softer, we will tune it to a whisper. We will control the horizontal. We will control the vertical. We can roll the image, make it flutter. We can change the focus to a soft blur or sharpen it to crystal clarity. If we so choose, we will make this blog unavailable. You have entered Google Blogger.

The hell of it is, when I went to leave a comment on another blog - Proper Course as it happens - and was required to log in, I was told that gmail (google) had detected "suspicious activity" on my account and therefore I needed to jump through some hoops. In the meantime, my email and blogs were "frozen".

Suspicious activity? Like the fact I often log in to gmail on my wife's computer and forget to log out before logging in on my own computer? The multiple BCC emails I send to friends and family? Or perhaps it is the complaints I made about how sucky the new universal look and feel of the "new" Google empire is, as they move toward making all of their web applications look the same in name of corporate unity and to hell with functionality? In addition, the new "privacy policy" (sic) basically combines all data gathered about you from any of Google's apps - gmail, blogger, youtube, google, google+, etc. - and puts them into one database... to "enhance" your Google experience of course!

Whatever. I apologize to my readers for any inconvenience. It was, of course, for my own security, in the same way TSA strip searches grandmas and children in the name of security, while allowing the food service and cleaning personnel access to aircraft with no check points save swiping a magnetic card at the door. Welcome to the new corporate internet world order.

I had already set up a new email account when Google announced the coming changes. I also don't do Facebook or Google+. You can bet I will find an alternative to blogger - or stop blogging. I am not one to put my whole life on the internet (I think I do plenty of that already, thank you very much), and making some young jerks filthy rich by providing my personal details for them to exploit, with advertising revenue and IPOs, doesn't thrill me. I'll be happy to do that (maybe) when they cut me a fair percentage to pay for my content - which they have yet to offer to do.

To add insult to injury, when I attempted to comply with their requests I found myself faced with a page asking for my phone provider, so that they could text me a message or a verbal one by landline. Um. I don't own a phone. No one told me that was a requirement for using Gmail or Blogger. I very rarely use a phone and when I do it is K's landline and occasionally Skype. I then was asked to provide an alternate email address. I gave them three, one of which is the one I will be using instead of Gmail from here on.

So if anyone is wondering, that is why my email and two blogs have been off line for a while. I was happy that they contacted me within a few hours and restored my blogs. They neglected to inform me why this happened so I don't know how to prevent from reoccurring.

As I told Odocker recently, I am buying a manual type writer (true). I'm trying to figure out a way to stay online and maintain my blogs, but if I can't maintain control over my own content, I may go "analog". Perhaps an old fashioned snail mail newsletter would do as well - and would be self limiting to people who really were interested. Never forget that they need us more than we need them. Prophetic clip:

Please stay tuned. Sorry, I forgot. Your other mind control machine - TV - is probably tuned to a sporting event this weekend. Perhaps I'll address how to free yourself from that as well in a future post.

End of rant transmission.
1 - The Outer Limits http://youtu.be/8CtjhWhw2I8
2- The Prisoner (1967)


K and S said...

that is awful :( glad to see you back up

Don Snabulus said...

I did a little checking around. As far as privacy policies, almost anyone is better than the Goog. I have messed with Tumblr and WordPress and they both have their charms. Anything free is going to come with the price of ads or analytics. I also checked out Posterous and it looks interesting, but not much different. I believe LiveJournal was bought by a Russian company a few years back, but I don't know if that helps or hurts...probably doesn't help.

Thanks to most people valuing lack of cost over control, the paid options are somewhat sparse and more expensive than they should be in some cases.

Conclusion: I don't know, but WordPress is probably the easier choice of the bunch.

Pandabonium said...

K and S - thanks.

Snabby - I was going to email you about this and ask your opinion. Thanks so much for your insights!

HappySurfer said...

Too controlling, I agree.

You may want to have your own domain.