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Jordan:

I don't trust ANY company's privacy policy...they are not worth the paper
they are printed on (assuming that they are even on paper as opposed to a
webpage).  Companies can change (or "flip-flop" to use a new political
term) them at any point, as you pointed out...so they are meaningless in
my opinion.  Thus, the reason why I generally don't bother to read the
privacy policies...I just make my decision based upon the assumption that
my privacy will be violated and procede with that thought in mind.

And you are likely correct that the Gmail advertising is likely like the
Google search advertising.  The difference is that in order to target the
advertising for you email, they actually have to READ the content of your
email messages.  This is just a little more severe than "reading" my
search terms.  Now, supposedly they are not using this information, but
then we are reaching the point that if the company has it somewhere, then
it can be demand and gotten by parties of lawsuits or the government (for
terrorist or other investigations).  This goes a little to fair for me.

Now, all this is moot for something like just using if for SEAINT
postings...after all, this message and every other messsage posted to the
list will be available for ANYONE to see on the web-based archive.

And this does not even begin to deal with the possibility that your ISP is
reading your email ANYWAY.  <grin>  You just have to trust that they are
not.  And besides, unless you encrypt your messages with something like
PGP, ANYONE can intercept your messages and read them.  Standard email
traffic is VERY unprotected.

Regards,

Scott
Adrian, MI


On Thu, 18 Nov 2004, Jordan Truesdell, PE wrote:

> I think that the privacy issue is salient for ANY webmail which you do not
> personally run.  As far as I can tell, gmail's advertising appears to be
> similar to the paid text ads you get when you do a google search (the right
> hand sidebar). The ads are relevant to the text of your email. The
> discussion I had with Ray produced a sidebar with links to anti-spam
> products/sites.
>
> I personally don't trust Microsoft or Yahoo at all to abide by their
> privacy policies, or at least not to change them mid-stream if it suits
> their purpose or wallet.  I don't use google for my main email either.  My
> "real" email is done on domains which I own (truesdell dot org and
> truesdellengineering dot com). I do have a webmail interface which, if I
> knew linux, I could change to just about any package I wanted, though
> squirrelmail works fine in a pinch.  Owning the domain(s) means that I can
> make up a new email address for every vendor, so I know who's selling or
> giving out my information (note my seaint address, for example). I spend a
> whopping $10 a month for 6 domains, and could have as many as 20 domains on
> my account. I get unlimited email addresses and a decent amount of email,
> web, and ftp space shared over all my domains served from a stable, well
> connected server farm in Atlanta, GA.
>
> It boils down to "you get what you pay for," whether you pay with dollars
> or eyeballs or data-production.
>
> Actually, I like the gmail interface better than Eudora.  As much as it
> would simplify my computing life, I don't use Outlook - too many script
> kiddies use it as a playground.
>
> At 01:57 PM 11/18/2004 -0500, you wrote:
> >Jordan:
> >
> >The only thing that I will note is that there have been some privacy
> >concerns raised about some of Google's Gmail policies (supposedly they
> >intend to "pay" for Gmail by including targeted, based upon the content of
> >YOUR message, advertising...which means that in order to do so, they would
> >have to READ your message for keywords, etc in some automated manner...the
> >concern is what will they do with that information).  If you are fine with
> >such things, then by all means use it...but it is something of a potential
> >concern for some.
> >
> >Regards,
> >
> >Scott
> >Adrian, MI
> >
> >
> >On Thu, 18 Nov 2004, Jordan Truesdell, PE wrote:
> >
> > > Ray,
> > >
> > > YGM! (You've got mail), as they say.  I just sent you a gmail invite -
> > > Google's web mail "pre-release".  Of course, it's really a fully functional
> > > system, but by limiting new accounts to a "by invitation only" status,
> > > they've created a simulated shortage of accounts, resulting in everyone and
> > > their brother wanting one.
> > >
> > > Anyway, it appears to have a very good filtering system. A gig of storage
> > > for free, too. Plus, you can forward to a POP mail account (for free, right
> > > now...who knows what the future will bring.)
> > >
> > > I hate to start a gmail invites thread here, but, well, I have five more
> > > should anyone else be interested. Please email me off-list at
> > > seaint-gmailATtrueNOsSPAMdellDOTorg.
> > >
> > > Jordan
> > >
> > >
> > >
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