Google Chrome has become surveillance software.

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Re: Google Chrome has become surveillance software.

»Q«
In <news:[hidden email]>,
Sailfish <[hidden email]> wrote:

> My bloviated meandering follows what Hartdonor graced us with on
> 6/25/2019 1:48 PM:
> > On Tue, 25 Jun 2019 07:59:54 -0500, in mozilla.general, »Q« wrote:
> >  
> >> In <news:[hidden email]>,
> >> Hartdonor <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >>  
> >>> You missed the point. The point is they're calling Google Chrome
> >>> "surveillance software" because it accepts cookies. That's just a
> >>> hit job. All browsers accept cookies. Firefox used to accept
> >>> third-party by default, and it wasn't "surveillance software"
> >>> when it did.  
> >>
> >> I'm confused about what defaults changed, if any.  I just created
> >> a new profile with Fx 67.0.4, and it's accepting all cookies,
> >> except in 'private' windows, where it blocks known trackers.  

This is weird.  I just created a new new profile, and the default is to
block third-party tracking cookies, but still not block trackers except
in private mode.

> > This article is just terrible. Firefox has the tools, but most
> > people won't be using them.
> >  
> Not disagreeing that most people won't use the tools; however, if the
> article convinces others to become aware of the Chrome neglected
> privacy issues and how Fx has taken steps to safeguard their privacy,
> how is that a terrible thing write about?

The article gives the strong impression that simply installing
Firefox will make it less easy for the trackers to follow everything
you do, which is harmful.  It also says Mozilla "isn't in the
data-collection business"*, which isn't true.  Mozilla collect as much
data as they can, and they are using it to try to figure out how to
make money.  There's quite a distinction to be drawn between the way
Mozilla uses collected data and the way Google use it, but the article
just distorts reality.

What's grabbed the author's attention is the idea that Firefox's
defaults are good, or about to be good according to people he talked
with at Mozilla.  He doesn't seem to be aware that Mozilla have been
blowing hot air about privacy for years.  I think/hope that Mozilla
really are ready to make the defaults significantly better, but I'd be
amazed if it amounts to anything like the "war on surveillance" they
told him they're mounting.

All that said, I don't think the article is much worse than most of
what tech journalists write.  It's got to be the easiest beat for
lazy reporters to do well in.  

* That phrase is actually a hyperlink, at least in the
  siliconvalley.com version of the article, but the link is just to
  Mozilla's main Firefox page, which has nothing on it about Mozilla's
  collection of data.

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Re: Google Chrome has become surveillance software.

Sailfish-4
My bloviated meandering follows what »Q« graced us with on 6/25/2019
9:02 PM:

> In <news:[hidden email]>,
> Sailfish <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> My bloviated meandering follows what Hartdonor graced us with on
>> 6/25/2019 1:48 PM:
>>> On Tue, 25 Jun 2019 07:59:54 -0500, in mozilla.general, »Q« wrote:
>>>  
>>>> In <news:[hidden email]>,
>>>> Hartdonor <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>>>  
>>>>> You missed the point. The point is they're calling Google Chrome
>>>>> "surveillance software" because it accepts cookies. That's just a
>>>>> hit job. All browsers accept cookies. Firefox used to accept
>>>>> third-party by default, and it wasn't "surveillance software"
>>>>> when it did.  
>>>> I'm confused about what defaults changed, if any.  I just created
>>>> a new profile with Fx 67.0.4, and it's accepting all cookies,
>>>> except in 'private' windows, where it blocks known trackers.  
>
> This is weird.  I just created a new new profile, and the default is to
> block third-party tracking cookies, but still not block trackers except
> in private mode.
>
>>> This article is just terrible. Firefox has the tools, but most
>>> people won't be using them.
>>>  
>> Not disagreeing that most people won't use the tools; however, if the
>> article convinces others to become aware of the Chrome neglected
>> privacy issues and how Fx has taken steps to safeguard their privacy,
>> how is that a terrible thing write about?
>
> The article gives the strong impression that simply installing
> Firefox will make it less easy for the trackers to follow everything
> you do, which is harmful.  It also says Mozilla "isn't in the
> data-collection business"*, which isn't true.  Mozilla collect as much
> data as they can, and they are using it to try to figure out how to
> make money.  There's quite a distinction to be drawn between the way
> Mozilla uses collected data and the way Google use it, but the article
> just distorts reality.
>
The issue, as I see it, isn't that Mozilla is without sin on data
collection but, rather, that they provide the user tools that will
prevent other 3rd parties from collecting and tracking the consumer.
They may very well be collecting data but are they selling and/or
providing the tracking data they collect to 3rd parties? I've not read
that anywhere.

> What's grabbed the author's attention is the idea that Firefox's
> defaults are good, or about to be good according to people he talked
> with at Mozilla.  He doesn't seem to be aware that Mozilla have been
> blowing hot air about privacy for years.  I think/hope that Mozilla
> really are ready to make the defaults significantly better, but I'd be
> amazed if it amounts to anything like the "war on surveillance" they
> told him they're mounting.
>
Again, that's Mozilla project manager hype (or even probably their real
beliefs?) I can't fault an the article's author for reporting on what
they heard from Mozilla. However, there's really no denying that Mozilla
provides some of the best privacy features, including the prefs settings
to make it more privacy conscious.

> All that said, I don't think the article is much worse than most of
> what tech journalists write.  It's got to be the easiest beat for
> lazy reporters to do well in.  
>
The point I take issue with is when others contend that the article's
intention is to spread FUD like it's only the difference between Coke or
Pepsi commercials. Considering how privacy-averse Chrome is, I contend
that those who care about tracking and data privacy should be afraid;
especially when logged into Google, that very likely every Android
device is.
https://gizmodo.com/a-guide-to-using-android-without-selling-your-soul-to-g-1827875582

> * That phrase is actually a hyperlink, at least in the
>   siliconvalley.com version of the article, but the link is just to
>   Mozilla's main Firefox page, which has nothing on it about Mozilla's
>   collection of data.
>
Noted.

--
Sailfish
Rare Mozilla Stuff: http://tinyurl.com/z86x3sg
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Re: Google Chrome has become surveillance software.

Hartdonor
In reply to this post by »Q«
On Tue, 25 Jun 2019 23:02:38 -0500, in mozilla.general, »Q« wrote:

>This is weird.  I just created a new new profile, and the default is to
>block third-party tracking cookies, but still not block trackers except
>in private mode.

That is the behavior I thought it was supposed to do. Maybe it's just a
little quirky? Maybe it blocks them automatically when you set up a new
profile, but assumes you know what you're doing with an existing profile?
That would explain why a complete fresh install did that.

This is a really good thing for privacy in my book. I think the article
has a poor headline, but the solution Fx provides is pro-active, and it
doesn't exist in the most popular browsers.

--
Give all you can, don't give more than you can.
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