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Google Speaks: Secrets of the World's Greatest Billionaire Entrepreneurs, Sergey Brin and Larry Page by Janet Lowe

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9.2. PRIVACY ISSUE

"Privacy is dead, get over it," famously declared Sun Microsystems founder Scott McNealy.[]

On one hand, Google goes to court to defend the privacy of those using its search engine. Eric Schmidt emphasizes that Google depends on the trust of its users, adding, "It would be a disaster for the company if that privacy were compromised by a privacy leak or some very bad government action that we couldn't stop under threat of tanks."[]

On the other hand, Google frequently is accused of invading privacy through its advertising programs, its map applications, its e-mail service, and in other ways. Google's "Internet evangelist" Vint Cerf echoed McNealy's point of view in a speech he gave to the Washington Technology Alliance's annual luncheon: "... nothing you do ever goes away, and nothing you do ever escapes notice... there isn't any privacy, get over it."[]

Ken Boehm, chairman of the National Legal and Policy Center, disagreed: "Perhaps in Google's world privacy does not exist, but in the real world individual privacy is fundamentally important and is being chipped away bit by bit every day by companies like Google. Google's hypocrisy is breathtaking."[]

Privacy is one of the topics that scare people most about Google. "Google knows more and more about us, but right now there's almost nothing we can do to find out exactly what it does with that information," observed Frank Pasquale, an associate professor at Seton Hall University School of Law and a proponent for ...

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