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?


The thing is not using Google search doesn't mean your privacy is take back, it just means now you have given it to some other search engine. Really, even if you don't use a search engine you still don't have any privacy. Cameras are everywhere and you buy things in stores, online etc your info is in apps, the government owns you... Everyone owns you to some degree. So you and everyone trying to make Google out as the sore evil above everyone else isn't factual.

Only in American retailers’ wildest dreams could they sell more than $1 billion of merchandise an hour, yet that’s exactly what happened in China on Singles Day last year. China, which has long been the world’s most populous nation, surpassed the U.S. as the world’s biggest retail market in 2016. And that’s why even on Amazon’s best day—which to date is Prime Day 2018, when it reportedly needed 12 extra hours to sell a measly $100 million per hour—it doesn’t come close to ecommerce platform Alibaba and Singles Day.
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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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Google is everywhere. It gathers information to power its massive advertising arm. Google is tracking you around the internet, building an individual advertising profile to better serve you ads. Some users don’t mind, reasoning that if they’re going to see ads (advertising essentially powers the internet), they might as well see ones relevant to their interests.
You do realize that Microsoft (Bing) is all about data mining as well right? They're no different than Google. Windows 10 iteself is a glorified version of the Chrome desktop aimed at gathering as much information as possible with a small amount of anonymity. When suggesting a new search alternative to Google, Duckduckgo.com is the best alternative for those who would rather not be a demographic.
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