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Google unifies, updates terms of service and policies

Updates to Google

The title sounds geeky, but this is important information for all Google users from Gmail to YouTube. Google announced today that they are not only updating their Terms of Service to be more easily understood by common people, but the policies will be consistent between their services and will take effect on March 1st. This update comes as part of a slow process to not only rebrand all Google products and make them play nicely together, but to make them function as if they are one company with divisions, rather than dozens of separate companies.

Google is reducing their 70 privacy documents across their various products to one single document that explains what information the company collects, how it is used and what privacy policies exist in light of their rebrand alongside regulators’ pressure on all online services to make clear privacy policies.

The new practice will treat any Google user (Gmail, YouTube, GCal, Blogger, etc.) as a single user across all networks and collect information accordingly, combining information, which we suspect is in large part to fuel their ad platform.

By combining data, the company adds that they can someday “provide reminders that you’re going to be late for a meeting based on your location, your calendar and an understanding of what the traffic is like that day. Or ensure that our spelling suggestions, even for your friends’ names, are accurate because you’ve typed them before. People still have to do way too much heavy lifting, and we want to do a better job of helping them out.”

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Alma Whitten, Director of Privacy, Product and Engineering at Google said in a statement that Google remains “committed to data liberation, so if you want to take your information elsewhere you can. We don’t sell your personal information, nor do we share it externally without your permission except in very limited circumstances like a valid court order. We try hard to be transparent about the information we collect, and to give you meaningful choices about how it is used.”

Written By

Marti Trewe reports on business and technology news, chasing his passion for helping entrepreneurs and small businesses to stay well informed in the fast paced 140-character world. Marti rarely sleeps and thrives on reader news tips, especially about startups and big moves in leadership.

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