Is Gmail’s invasive new Google+ integration hypocritical too?

Gmail's log-in page (September 2011)
It doesn’t apply to the elite
‘By default, Google says it is letting anyone on Google+ send messages to your inbox, even if you don’t have them in a circle, making the service completely opt-out rather than opt-in. However, we’ve confirmed that isn’t the case across the board.
Meaning: a white lie
‘For “high-profile” users who may have thousands of users following them, Google has decided to make the default more limited. Those users will only be able to receive messages from Google+ users that they have actively put in circles. “Because you have a lot of followers on Google+, only people in your circles can contact you by default,” reads the email Google sent out announcing the new feature to users with thousands of followers. This division between regular users and more popular Google+ users was reported earlier by MarketingLand and Reuters…’

How To Opt Out
‘Google recently announced that Gmail users will be able to email all of their Google+ connections, even if they don’t have their email address. The feature is currently being rolled out to all Gmail users. What does this mean? Well, if someone has you as a connection on Google+, you will appear in their To field when they search for your name, whether they have your email address or not.

‘However, they can only email you once and, if you click on Report Spam, that’s the end of the conversation. Messages will go to your Social tab, so this might be a good reason to enable tabs, if you haven’t already done it.

‘This definitely should be a feature that you should be able to opt in to, rather than having to opt-out. This seems like a ripe opportunity for your inbox to be inundated by messages you have no desire to read. However, you can control who’s allowed to email you, and it’s an easy process…’
opt out

Google is Going to Blackmail You
‘Google is trying harder than ever to force people to sign up for Google Plus. And now, they’ve discovered a new strategy to do this: either you join Plus, or they’ll release your search history and all the private information they’ve learned about you over the years…’


About DigitalPlato

Poch is a Bookrix author and a freelance writer. He is a frequent contributor to TED Conversations.
This entry was posted in privacy laws and violations, social media, social networking and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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