Pigs Fly: Google Adds Privacy Link To Home Page

Last month, a handful of privacy groups <a href="http://www.privacyrights.org/ar/Google-HomePage-Alert-080603.htm#1">urged Google</a> to add a link to its privacy policy on its <a href="http://www.google.com/">home page</a>, in accordance with California law.

Thomas Claburn, Editor at Large, Enterprise Mobility

July 3, 2008

1 Min Read

Last month, a handful of privacy groups urged Google to add a link to its privacy policy on its home page, in accordance with California law.

Google said it interpreted the law differently.Google resisted doing so in part because every bit counts when determining how quickly its home page loads, given that load speed and user satisfaction are strongly related. The company probably also wanted to avoid giving outsiders the idea that they can force design changes by complaining.

At the time, I suggested that Google replace the unnecessary "©2008 Google" copyright notice at the bottom of its home page with a privacy link.

And that's just what Google did today, more or less. Though the copyright symbol and date remain, the bottom text now reads "©2008 - Privacy."

In a blog post, Marissa Mayer, VP of search products and user experience, said that Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin would agree to the change only if the number of the words on the home page (28) remained unchanged. So the word "Google" was dropped because it was implied.

"Today we're making a homepage change by adding a link to our privacy overview and policies," said Mayer. "Google values our users' privacy first and foremost. Trust is the basis of everything we do, so we want you to be familiar and comfortable with the integrity and care we give your personal data. We added this link both to our homepage and to our results page to make it easier for you to find information about our privacy principles."

Well done, Google.

About the Author(s)

Thomas Claburn

Editor at Large, Enterprise Mobility

Thomas Claburn has been writing about business and technology since 1996, for publications such as New Architect, PC Computing, InformationWeek, Salon, Wired, and Ziff Davis Smart Business. Before that, he worked in film and television, having earned a not particularly useful master's degree in film production. He wrote the original treatment for 3DO's Killing Time, a short story that appeared in On Spec, and the screenplay for an independent film called The Hanged Man, which he would later direct. He's the author of a science fiction novel, Reflecting Fires, and a sadly neglected blog, Lot 49. His iPhone game, Blocfall, is available through the iTunes App Store. His wife is a talented jazz singer; he does not sing, which is for the best.

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