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Watch our new Times Square video: Don’t Be Evil?

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Mon, Aug 30, 2010 at 2:29 pm

    Watch our new Times Square video: <i>Don’t Be Evil?</i>

    Join us and tell Congress to create a ‘Do Not Track Me’ list. Sign our petition.


    Do you want Google or any other online company looking over your shoulder and tracking your every move online just so it can increase its profits? Consumers have a right to privacy. They should control how their information is gathered and what it is used for.

    This avatar-style animation video was created to draw attention to Google CEO Eric Schmidt’s lack of regard for our online privacy. Consumer Watchdog is promoting the video right now, 36 times per day, on a jumbotron in Times Square — the most highly-trafficked public square in the nation.

    It’s time to create a ‘Do Not Track Me’ list to prevent online companies from gathering our personal information, just as Congress had the Federal Trade Commission create a Do Not Call list to prevent intrusive telemarketers from invading consumers’ privacy.

    For more information, click here.

    For media inquiries, contact Jamie Court (jamie@consumerwatchdog.org) or John M. Simpson (john@consumerwatchdog.org).

    172 Responses to “Watch our new Times Square video: Don’t Be Evil?

    1. Wow Says:

      Dear uninformed,
      Do not listen to this drivel. Google provides more tools to protect your privacy than any other company that I know of. READ AND BE INFORMED YOURSELF.
      http://www.google.com/intl/en/privacy_tools.html
      These guys are either mis-informed or fear mongering frauds

    2. Christopher Says:

      If you are on the internet, you are being tracked. It is not just Google. If you want to have a private life, live as a hermit.

    3. BT Says:

      Great video. Critics of the video, I hope you understand that Google doesn’t just want web search information. They are also trying to create software to store ALL medical records. Anything and everything. Their search engine is just a small spec of what they want to accomplish. They want to become the center store for all information data for the sole purpose to sell it. Medical records contain social security data, home address, age, birth date, family size, etc. It would only take one person within their organization to get that data and steal your personal identity. Get credit, etc. Don’t be naive, be proactive, be aware.

    4. macroflux Says:

      Hilarious that anyone supports or sides with Google. Sure, dont use google or youtube, or any of the software companies they own, or phones with embedded search support, or participate in advertisements or offers at stores they gather data from. Or visit websites that have google ads. or google analytics installed by the creators. or watch their upcoming streaming movie and tv services, or any of their partner networks, or well, pretty much dont use technology that involves computers. mobile phones, cable tv, or any digital service related tech.

      No single corporate entity should have this much exposure to individual’s personal lives. Or store those interactions, recompile them, and do as they please with it.

      ‘Dont do bad things’.. where does that guy get off? Human nature says we make mistakes – hell even court systems dump legal records of people after X amount of years. People should not have a permanent record of activities under the guise of ‘internet freedom’ in the hands of a non-oversighted, non governmental institution, period, regardless of what they say they are using it for. How do you know what they do? Does anyone outside their corporate cult have an ability to say, ok, that usage there, I dont like. Trusting someone to oversight themselves in your interests is how every bad thing starts off.

      And for god’s sake, get them out of the White House. It’s even worse that they have the President’s ear and have the ability to shape FCC laws. I dont remember electing Google to participate in my digital freedom lawmaking.

    5. Steve Gates Says:

      Wow, this is a whole new level of silliness from CW. And I thought you couldn’t get any dumber than thinking that sitting out side the homes of members of congress and snooping on their wifi networks was a good idea, now you go and do this?

      One word for what you are: PATHETIC.

      No wonder why you have fewer than 1,500 “likes” on facebook. People can see right through this crap. Give it up already – you are fully smack dab in the center of CRAZY LAND. Enough.

    6. BwO Says:

      I knew that Steve Ballmer was a nut, but him sponsoring youtube videos attacking other CEOs is getting a bit ridiculous.

      And anyway, would we really prefer to have Congress, rather than Google, overseeing our right to privacy. I KNOW congress is evil. With Google at least I’m till in suspense.

    7. Jm Says:

      Adam Baird, not visiting Google does not help. Have you heard of Google Analytics? Most every site uses it. If you use the web, Google knows about your every move. I support 200% the creation of the Do Not Track Me or whatever list that keeps my activities on the web private. You think people who care about their privacy have something to hide? Wait until your wife/hubby’s divorce lawyer subpoena your Google records to see what you have done on the web. Doesn’t matter whether you were virgin Maria. At some point you have visited a porn site by accident, a pop up, pop under, whatever. Divorce lawyers will create a negative profile about you and screw your life up. Like the saying goes: Give me 6 lines written by the most honorable of men and I’ll find a excuse to hang him. I know this is too hard for you to understand. Unfortunately you type doesn’t learn until they hit the wall.

      Good job Jamie. I sleep well at night thanks to you people. You wouldn’t believe how grateful we are. You are doing an amazing job exposing Google’s privacy issues.

    8. Micaheath Says:

      You guys are so misguided it hurts! Get a life and stop messing with a company that has actually helped the world in countless ways! The information they gather is useless, the majority of it is anonymous! well unless your an idiot and choose to share things that you don’t want to be sharing… GET A LIFE and find a better way to make a buck then attacking a company that isn’t doing anything wrong. I hope they sue the crap out of you, because you deserve it, what you are claiming is beyond slanderous and just down right awful. Good luck fighting Google’s lawyers idiot. and if you have noticed by your comments, most people DO NOT AGREE WITH YOU. and the only ones that do are idiots that you have convinced by your fear mongering and have no idea how the internet REALLY works. SO good luck with your campaign because you are going to need it. It is people like you that start wars by mis-informing people and creating a fear that does not exist. YOU ARE THE EVIL ONE NOT GOOGLE!!!

    9. Ghosterian Says:

      Install Ghostery, protect your privacy.

    10. Joe Blow Says:

      How ironic. Google owns YouTube, so you’ve just lured me into letting them track the fact that I watched your hilarious video. They’ll probably blacklist me now!

    11. captain_admin Says:

      Go ahead and accuse Google of tracking people’s internet activities. Inside Google uses click-driven tracking as well. Who knows what they or who they sell it to? Inside Google uses Open Source tracking software called Piwik. Just look in the source code. I guess I won’t be reading anymore of Mr. Court’s propaganda. Seems to me he is either ignorant of technology, or a very aware hypocrite. There is no privacy as a consumer in the States, and for the longest time we complained that retailers didn’t pay attention to the consumer and demanded more attention. Some business use tracking the right way – to server the consumer/customer better and help them find what they are looking for. “Do Not Track Me” list? Please, and if you get rid of Google Analytics you could always use information from the web server! If you want privacy take measure or simply don’t get on the interwebs.

    12. Anne Onymous Says:

      It is the position of Schmidt, and not of Inside Google, that should worry you. They weren’t making stuff up – he really said those things. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/12/07/google-ceo-on-privacy-if_n_383105.html

      Google has been investigated for spying in multiple countries. The Australians, the Germans, the UK, the US and others. It has surreptitiously lifted wi-fi information and various bits of personal information.

      With the push for facial recognition software integrated with their enormous database, Google is attempting to create a cross-reference capable of giving even Orwell nightmares. http://clemson.academia.edu/ChiragGupta/Papers/71729/Robust-Facial-Recognition-with-Reconfigurable-Platforms

    13. Internet Consultants Says:

      The video is true… Google is dominating too much in this world.

    14. Darren Says:

      If you don’t think Google is evil you have no idea what they’re doing. Look into it, it will make you want to set your computer on fire.

    15. Chris Says:

      It would appear Google has turned their automaton employees lose to barrage this website with their propaganda. Nothing better than having an army of brain washed uber entitled Gen Y’ers.

    16. Kevin Says:

      First, whether intended or not, the video seems to imply a comparison to Google’s activities and child molestation, which is abhorrent.

      Secondly, if you use Google’s Chrome browser, you can open an “incognito” browser window, and “webpages that you open and files downloaded while you are incognito not to be recorded in your browsing and download histories.” Also, in your Google account settings, you can pause the tracking of all personal information, browsing history and records. So, instead of the government protecting us from the “evil” Google, just take some personal responsibility.

      Thirdly, I happily let Google track everything I do online because what they do with it is provide me with more personalized products and information and to tailor their ads to my tastes so that I may actually find something that interests me; which is a win for me, the company advertising, and Google.

      Finally, I understand that my preferences are mine, not everyone’s, so if someone wants to be on a “Do not track me list”, that’s fine, but to try and scare people into it with fear mongering and one-sided information is ridiculous and a waste of my tax dollars.

      P.S. How long are you going to keep my email address on file that you required me to input?

    17. Sofocles Says:

      Um, care to explain us all exactly HOW WILL WE RETAIN OUR ANONIMITY BY BEING ON A DO-NOT-TRACK-ME ****LIST**** ?????

      thank you, smart person.

    18. Mario Says:

      Yup!

      The problem is most people don’t know just how much information Google is hoarding!

      I read a post that says “well just don’t visit google…” well let me tell you that 50% of the sites you visit are providing information to google, this one included since it is using youtube allows google to gather even MORE personal data.

    19. Holmes Says:

      Yeah, I’m afraid I can’t take your organization seriously — as laudable as its goals may be — when your opening gambit is to cast Eric Schmidt as a creepy pedophile. As GabrielB says above, it’s hard to go anywhere constructive from there.

    20. PaulS Says:

      I do like the freemarket approach. If I don’t trust Google I’ll just use Bing, oh wait they reserve the right to track me also. Well ok I’ll just use….. shoot, all the privacy agreements seem to give the search engines owner the right to track me. But the freemarket does give me a choice of who will track me so I guess I do have a choice

    21. ANON Says:

      Without being rude, but how do you set a list of people who do not want to be on a list?

    22. Kevin Heath Says:

      Keep up the good work. Strange how you’re hosting it on youtube though, giving Google access to all visitors to this page.

    23. ScottK-N-Texas Says:

      No, the government doesn’t need to be involved in this. The Government is more intrusive than Google will ever be. Government is not the solution to all our problems. Just stop using Google, if your that concerned. Advertising is really the foundation of Google’s business. That said, it is a neat animation.

    24. Bobby Says:

      For the Google fan boys, get a look at Google Alarm http://jamiedubs.com/googlealarm/ . It’s a Firefox add-on which visually & audibly alerts you when your personal information is being sent to Google servers. And don’t forget to watch the demo.

      Some Google fan boys might be shocked.

    25. Kevin Heath Says:

      You can’t effectively “stop using Google” if you want to participate on the internet. They’ve produced or bought a wide range of services to ensure they can track you on most major websites e.g. recaptcha, the two word security code required to sign up for a lot of sites; gmail – you can’t stop people directing your messages through google’s servers; jquery – a javascript library that most people use google’s mirror of and is required for a lot of sites to operate.

    26. DoNotTrackMe Says:

      Anon is right. The idea is flawed to start with. If you look at most search services, there are mechanisms to control of your own privacy. If there’s space to improve there, that would be the direction you guys should take. Increase scrutiny of their anonymization techniques if they are somehow flawed (all sites do anonymize and aggregate their data – keeping actual information about the user is more of a burden than any benefit to them). Leave the government out, since they have been the worst ones with regarding to privacy. And stop using terror to get to your goals. That’s exactly the strategy Bush used to destroy privacy with the patriotic act.
      And get ready for defamation suits – associating Eric Schimidt and Google to pedophilia is not really freedom of expression.

    27. Chill Out Says:

      A lot of comments sound like they come from a bunch of uptight whiners. The video was hilarious and it’s point was to portray Eric Schmidt as the evil slime ball that he is, not a pedophile. He didn’t lure them into the van, you shrinking violets.

      Our rights are being violated all day by the corporatocracy that runs this country. Stop complaining about organizations like Inside Google that are just informed citizens trying to protect American’s right to privacy and as a consequence, save idiots that don’t care about privacy, from their own ignorance.

    28. J-o-h-n Says:

      Yes, I want to sign up for the “Don’t track me” list, so first thing I should do is sign up a list to “Don’t track me” list that you could know who support you, right?
      Wait, this thing sounds a little bit irony, does it? So may be we should have an inside-inside-google to make sure inside-google won’t do something stupid.
      I’m not a google-lover but I do trust google more than our government. And if you have time to deal with google which is relatively better, you should go to deal with facebook first. They are really selling our privacies for money.

    29. Rex Says:

      Great stuff. I really appreciate the initiative. So few consumer-rights organizations out there these days. Jamie, you are my new hero, following along a list that includes Ralph Nader. Good work, sir.

      Regarding Kevin’s comments on Sep 3 at 2:04pm, I see no connection to child molestation. Might be the sort of thing Kevin may wish to discuss with a Rorschac Test administrator.

      By the way, Kevin, how look have you been working at Google?

    30. A good start! Says:

      I don’t completely agree that an opt in Do Not Track list is the best option, but it’s better than pretending there is a benevolent face behind the massive internet company with the rainbow logo. The entire practice of businesses scraping and selling customer records should be made illegal. Do you think that the money businesses make selling your information is really returned to the customer or used to improve the quality of services? No. It’s invested in more invasive tracking schemes so they can pocket more money. First party tracking on websites would still be acceptable, in my mind, as long as the data was protected by law (could not be sold or linked to other outside data sources). Advertising would not suffer, although it may dent Google’s profits. They want to convince users and advertisers that targeted advertising is more effective than it really is because it drives away competition by companies with less potential tracking reach.

      The comments here shock me, but I understand people often don’t know who they can trust and happily accept Google’s overly simplified claims. Some people just defend Google, although the company would never do the same thing for them. A Do Not Track List would apply to EVERY website. People complaining about other non-Google companies must be trying to trick others or are still brain washed. Google needs to be targeted first. Don’t target the small companies when Google snoops on you in the offline world, has web bugs planted on 90% of the internet, controls what content you see, and has a lot of influence on the government (pushing them, too, to do (more?) evil).

    31. Ernest Says:

      To all those who think the Google Tools web page allows you to control what information Google has on you, have a close look at it. It only controls the information is has on you that it can directly track while you are using a machine that has been logged on to a Google account and has a Google account cookie on it and is storing information direct from your use of a Google web site. That tools page then allows you to change settings about what is recorded for that account. If you don’t have a Google account log on, you can’t affect any settings for any data they have stored on, which they will from searches etc. Also, it has absolutely no effect on any information they gather in any other way, such as with Google Adsense and Google Analytics where the data storage is started from another web site.

      If you use a new system to log in and check your Gmail, then log out and a little later go to the system and do some searches. A check of the Google Privacy Tools page shows that despite NOT being logged on with your Google Account, they still identified the searches from that system against your log on ID. If they were real about privacy, they would not have linked those searches with your ID, you may have accessed via another machine while at a cafe or something and the searches could have been done by another. But because the cookie hangs around and is active for awhile after you log out, they get the data.

      Anyway, whose to say what you tell the Google Privacy Tools page is what actually happens with the data.

      And if you think Google are bad, if you have a Windows 7 computer, have a go at totally disabling the embedded user accounts that Microsoft have in there to allow them to access the system over the Internet. If you do manage to do it, please let us all know. Many of the versions of Win 7 do NOT even show the administrator that the accounts exist, nor show how to disable them, but they’re there.

    32. Ernest Says:

      If you think clearing the browser history stops the Google tracking, you don’t understand how the system works. The history and browser records are just a local record and removing them just means that someone using that system after you can’t see what you’ve been looking at, end of story. The Google tracking is done with cookies that are downloaded to your system, placed in a special cookie cache, and then sent out with the information whilst you are actually ON the web site, this information is sent to the Google servers as you do the browsing, in some cases it’s done before you finish getting the web site loaded to watch it as it’s part of the load process.

    33. CP Says:

      At this moment I couldn’t care less about what happens to G. I hate them with a passion. Can’t defend them anymore. My business was destroyed by Mayday. I’d say, throw the law book at them. The government needs to get involved and break it into pieces until they disappear. The abuse has to stop. Read this and the comments below it too:

      http://www.armandmorin.com/major-google-issue-affects/

    34. James Woods Says:

      haha, yeah let’s “do not track people” by making them sign-up to a list.

      How about a track me list. If you want to be tracked you opt-into a list.

      Otherwise what google does isn’t any different than peering into your neighbors bedroom window.

    35. Jim Says:

      Wow, you guys don’t really stand for anything unless it’s “against google.” How about picking the privacy fight (which is a legitimate fight) with everyone instead of just your “chosen target.”

    36. Google Nemesis Says:

      I want to see Google pulverized by the government. I want them to feel what is being on page 455 with quotes.

    37. Nikita Says:

      Hi,

      You have just hoarded and stored private information about me, my preferences (analyzing my browsing history via a traffic analytics service), and can potentially track my IP with no problem whatsoever. All the information is stored on your servers.

      Personally, I really don’t care about privacy, and the explanation is simple: I do not lie.

      The privacy you are talking about in the clip (which is abhorrent, really) is the privacy founded on the fact that it is in human nature to lie, and to protect that, well sorry, no way.

      Oh, BTW, you guys should think a lot before trying to secure governmental control on anything. Governments are, well governments, and businesses in their own right, with waaay more rights than any company, and way more information stored on servers (does it bother you that all the information about you can be accessed by a governmental organ? Not just that you cheat on your wife). Think before you do, I implore you. Governments are not the kind of thing that you want to get out of control. Ask me, I live in Russia;)

      Oh, BTW, who funds you guys? It would be interesting how much do you get for selling out, instead of doing real work) Good to compare rates in the US and Russia;)

    38. Anonymous Says:

      This whole idea is ridiculous. They want to create a “Do Not Track Me LIST”, this website uses GOOGLE Analytics to TRACK the sites traffic. Also, not only does Google Chrome offer an incognito browsing service, so does IE8+, Firefox 5+, and Opera. Every browser offers this function. Maybe if these “Watchdogs” stopped spreading slander and put the money more towards educating people about practices to improve their online privacy, and not towards attacking a for the most part innocent company. Maybe then they could make a difference. To those who are thinking of signing this horrible and flawed idea…DON’T. Also, check out Wired’s article about their Times Square Ad.

    39. Bob Says:

      Nikita, you live in Russia!

      Taking advice from you is like appointing Lindsay Lohan as a guidance counselor or Colonel Sanders as the head of the coronary academy. It’s like an Amish hacker, it just doesn’t fit.

      “You have just hoarded and stored private information about me, my preferences (analyzing my browsing history via a traffic analytics service), and can potentially track my IP with no problem whatsoever. All the information is stored on your servers.”

      I want to drink that Vodka you are Nikita! That’s a cheap shot. They won’t sell your information or use it against you. They don’t use that information for competition purposes to get your businesses bankrupted. insidegoogle.com is nothing. Just a simple complaint site. Google controls the net. If Google wants, they can bring the US economy to its knees tomorrow. The world would freeze if Google wants. That’s how much power they have.

      “Personally, I really don’t care about privacy”

      I know you don’t because the word “privacy” doesn’t exist in Russia’s vocabulary. Your country is stuck in the before Christ’s times. Privacy is the least of your worries there. You are in Russia which laws are a different set of 20 dollar bills. The laws over there are a joke and corruption is rampant. You bring a privacy bill before Russia’s congress and they’ll laugh in your face.

      “and the explanation is simple: I do not lie.”

      Everyone lies. I think you need to read or listen to “The 50th Law” by Robert Greene and 50 Cent. You’ll learn a lot about yourself.

      I know you can’t see the big picture here. Unfortunately people like you won’t learn until you hit the wall. Until the cops come to your door for a crime you didn’t commit or when your husband’s divorce lawyer subpoenas Google records for your activities you people won’t learn. Think you are safe? Think again. The internet is very wild and porn, dating sites, and other adult related ads and content pop up more than often on non-adult sites. If you have seen porn ads on the net and you don’t visit porn sites you know what I’m talking about. That and more goes into the data G. stores about you. Your hubby’s divorce lawyer will no doubt try to create a negative profile about you in court and then either you are screwed (lose custody, pay high alimony, etc.) or bankrupted defending yourself. Those are things G. fanboys like you will never understand. Sorry I forgot. You are safe you live in Russia.

      From USA with love,

      Bob

    40. Reda B. Says:

      This is paranoia. If google scares you, don’t used it. End of story.

    41. Alex Says:

      Going for privacy in internet doesn’t mean going against Google alone.
      But wait, let’s see what your site is made of :)))
      OMG! What do I see?! You have Quantcast markers built into your website.
      So, You are for privacy, however you want to know who’s visiting your page anyway.
      You guys are bogus!!!

    42. Reginald Junkin Says:

      Reading through the comments, I’m surprise at how many thought the video portrayed the CEO as a pedophile.

      I saw the children in the video as symbols of naive internet users that don’t fully understand what they’re trading away to get free internet essentials.

      I saw the ice cream man/CEO as sort of a creepier, modern day willy wonka of technology, with perhaps more evil intent.

      I saw the parents as the watchdog groups.

      If I saw this as a child molester, I’d be a little concerned over my mental health or education. There’s some cliche child molester overtones (hey kids, you want some ice cream?). But if you view the whole thing as a child molester portrayal, I’d be more concerned about your educational level or your sexual tendencies than who’s spying or not spying on you.

    43. hoop Says:

      How do you people associate this spot with pedophilia? Damn!! People are……..(fill in the blank). I’ll start with ‘deceptively uneducated’.

    44. Jonathan Says:

      Hey,

      Here’s a thought. If Google is so bad, why are you sending me to YouTube, a google company, to watch the damn video?! Post it on Vimeo, on Metecafe, there are tons of good options.

      I looked for it on Vimeo and found this:
      http://vimeo.com/13744395

      If you are not doing so, please use and donated to the only search engine scraper http://www.scroogle.org (you have the power of google, only scroogle scrapes the data that the big guy keeps!

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