The answer for me is a resoundingly definitive NO! And I don't want to. I am deeply hooked into the Google ecosystem from Chrome OS and Android to Chromecast and a huge collection of their services. And I must admit I thoroughly enjoy having access to and using them even with the knowledge that Google uses them to collect a lot of data about me. That said, I feel that Google really does do a good job of letting me know when and how it is collecting my data as well as how they use it. Do I trust them 100%? No. There are certain things that I do take precautions to protect, be it encrypting certain documents I store in the cloud, using a vpn and incognito mode when appropriate, as well as using services, apps, and backups from other providers. In the end though, when all is said and done, I cannot think of one single thing that Google has done to harm me in any tangible way.

This looks like an article written to just drive people from using Google services for the sake of not using them and asking people to forego the high quality of service experience from an ecosystem that can leverage big data and AI to give you useful information that would otherwise not be possible for the common man at the relative cost of 'free'.
It is also amazing how this article was surfaced via my Google Now because Google knew I was interested in this kind of stuff. If Google was evil, they would never surface this type of article that has a opposite position to Google. Also that Ad shown at the bottom of this article was probably targeted based on Google data which ultimately helps you as the author monetize the traffic you are getting.

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Google should offer a way to disconnect anyone from it's sucking data pipe, on request. There might be times someone's is ill, ending a relationship, involved in delicate research, or simply feels no one should be tracking them at all right now. Maybe you've the right to disconnect from Google for a week or month. Then the tracking begins automatically. Better than nothing.
I have worked in digital strategy and advertising for my entire adult life. I buy advertising based on the data that Google and everyone else is gathering. Like millions of dollars a year. And I can tell you first hand that the tracking data is garbage, and frankly, at least for the foreseeable future, not something you should really be worried about, with one caveat. Advertisers are not the enemy, government and political agents are. ie. cambridge analytica. That is how you use this data to do harm.. We see literally thousands of advertisements a day. Does it *really* matter if my search history led to me seeing a different banner today?
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Everybody who uses the Facebook-app agrees that his/her entire phone book is uploaded to Facebook. This means that even if you're not using Google, not using WhatsApp and don't have a Facebook-account, your name, phone number, birthday and likely your address is already in Facebook's databases as soon as one of your colleagues uses that app - and this WITHOUT even asking you if you agree with Facebook having your data - thank your friends for uploading your data without asking you first. If there are more than two or three of your friends who use the Facebook-app, Facebook is already able to profile you pretty good according to your friends, their friends and all their preferences - without asking you for any agreement for this profiling. Comparing to that, I prefer Google's style of data-collecting since they show you very transparent that and what data they are collecting - and you still can opt out (or even have to opt in in first place) from everything. The true "privacy-enemy" are Facebook and similar, not Google...


The answer for me is a resoundingly definitive NO! And I don't want to. I am deeply hooked into the Google ecosystem from Chrome OS and Android to Chromecast and a huge collection of their services. And I must admit I thoroughly enjoy having access to and using them even with the knowledge that Google uses them to collect a lot of data about me. That said, I feel that Google really does do a good job of letting me know when and how it is collecting my data as well as how they use it. Do I trust them 100%? No. There are certain things that I do take precautions to protect, be it encrypting certain documents I store in the cloud, using a vpn and incognito mode when appropriate, as well as using services, apps, and backups from other providers. In the end though, when all is said and done, I cannot think of one single thing that Google has done to harm me in any tangible way.
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