It’s an open secret:  Gmail routinely scans the texts of emails. Now comes word that the new version of Yahoo! Mail will be scanning as well, and some users are upset because they are being “forced” to switch to it.

Funny how we netizens are “forced” to do things we don’t want to do. This is why I am so against “cloud computing.” This is why it pays to bookmark websites like OldVersion.com – this week I picked up an old Dell Latitude at a garage sale for a dollar. The OS was password protected and the family of the fellow who owned it (he had passed away) had no idea what it was. I wrote zeroes to the HD and installed WindowsXp, only to discover no Anti-Virus program I donwloaded would work on it without pre-downloading a rather hefty chunk of unwanted Windows updates. Needless to say, I made certain the auto-updates were turned off. I am using the machine for my literary works and will only be on the internet to check emails and that will be accomplished via dial-up. I was able to locate and download an excellent firewall that I’ll be using along with an online AV scanner.

Back to Google/Yahoo! – Invasion of Privacy or Monetization of Services?  ::: Some say Yahoo! was driven to make changes partially because of the number of users using Mail Classic not for email but as a free virus scanner. The peeps at Y-hoo likely developed new policy inspired by the big G: Google pretty much dictates how users can employ and deploy services. When choices are allowed, they are timed to “sunset.”  The new Yahoo! email carries the ability to analyze and scan emails to add targeted advertising. The service mandates users accept a new privacy policy along with new terms of use.

Yahoo! makes it crystal clear: users who do not accept the new conditions can leave. Oh, look! There’s the door…

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