Google to stop spying on your children


One of the major knocks on Google, is that the company collects its users' data. It is that data, coupled with advertising, that makes most of the search-giant's services free. Something being "free", however, is subjective. In other words, just because actual money is not being exchanged, does not mean that something valuable isn't. Your data is very valuable. So is Gmail truly free?

That is a decision that adult users must make. If they don't mind Google scanning their emails, that is OK. Quite frankly, there is nothing morally wrong with this approach on Google's behalf. However, children are an entirely different argument. Harvesting a child's data for profit comes off poorly to many, including myself. Sadly, Google had been doing just that -- scanning the contents of students' email accounts. By definition, this is spying, but luckily Google has decided to stop.

Google explains that it is doing the following:

We've permanently removed the "enable/disable" toggle for ads in the Apps for Education Administrator console. This means ads in Apps for Education services are turned off and administrators no longer have the option or ability to turn ads in these services on.

We've permanently removed all ads scanning in Gmail for Apps for Education, which means Google cannot collect or use student data in Apps for Education services for advertising purposes.

While this is great news, it is sad that it was not the policy from the start. Like I said, if Google wants to harvest data from consenting adults, so be it. However, children should be untouchable from these practices. Google services are really good for education and now that the email spying has stopped, at least for students, it is once again a viable solution.

Are you happy that Google has stopped spying on kids? Tell me in the comments.

Photo Credit: Luis LouroShutterstock

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