Saturday, April 28, 2012

I Wuz Here

So, I got this in the inbox, yesterday:

You are receiving this message because your email address is associated with an unmigrated legacy Blogger account. As we announced in April of last year, legacy accounts will no longer be accessible after May 30th, 2012 unless they are updated to the Google Account system. Any blog content associated with this account will also be unmodifiable after that date.

Etc.  Which is fine.  It's Google's free blogging software, and Google is primarily in the business of data-farming, and it's obviously much harder for them to farm data from email addresses that aren't provided by them - at least harder legally, if not technically.  They're Google, they can do pretty much anything on the internet that's possible to do.  They built the place, after all.

Thing is, the account the Rambler is currently tied to is my account from the old Copper Man website, which has since become my own website, for reasons having more to do with legacy and laziness than anything tangible and practical.  So when Google comes and says 'you can't login as Copper Man, anymore,' it seems like much more of a personal statement, if not an outright affront.

Is it silly to be more iffy about the idea of having my login change to a Google account for personal reasons than for issues of privacy?  Maybe.  There was a time when it would have been the other way around, but I guess I've started to adopt the millennial mindset about the new notion of privacy and online identity.  

If you need that spelled out for you, it's that people my age and older are generally more suspicious (and quite rightly) about both the blatant and subtle loss of privacy that comes with the age of digital/social networking.  People who are younger are more interested in finding ways to somehow stand out in the stream, and for people who are even younger, the idea of privacy, and increasingly, ownership of content, is falling into the past.  

One of the new tools that Google is offering - Drive, an online file-sharing/cloud service similar to Dropbox - has as one of its agreement points wording that implies that whatever you upload there, Google has the right to use.  Wording and discussion here.  It reads more like a Creative Commons copyright line than anything else.

This is the world we're in, now, rather than the world where everybody busts a blood vessel when John Lennon is used to advertise Nikes.  It's all grist for the mill, and I suppose Blogger, like Facebook and every other social networking site in which I participate can claim some sort of ownership of the content I've created over the years.  I've never not known this.  So why should I care if the name and the little creative avatar I've defined for myself digitally is no longer the literal key to this door through which I communicate with the world?


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