Don’t Give Up Your Right to Sue Google

No company wants to be sued. Since lawsuits can be common for large companies, especially large tech companies, it makes sense that these organizations create strategies to reduce their chances of being sued in the first place. But when those tactics are subtle, scummy, and anti-consumer, as is apparently the case with Google, you need to call it out.

Google’s arbitration agreement

As noted by Reddit user AldenB, Google essentially forces you to agree to an arbitration agreement when setting up a new Pixel device in the US. In this agreement, you waive your right to join a class-action lawsuit against Google regarding the device, should one exist in the future. In exchange, Google agrees to waive its right to join a class-action lawsuit against you. You know, because Google is constantly filing class-action lawsuits against its users.

This “agreement” is limited in scope: It only covers your right to join a class-action suit over the Pixel you’re registering, and not all future class action suits against the company. Even still: This tactic is bullshit.

Google is not going to file a class-action lawsuit against you. There is a much greater chance you might feel the need to file or join one against the company. Imagine if the company sold you this Pixel device, knowing there was a fatal flaw in the tech. A class-action lawsuit is filed, since so many users were affected by this deceitful business practice. But, wait! You all agreed not to join such a lawsuit when you set up your phone, so you can’t hop on. Bummer! Hey, at least Google can’t sue you, either.

If you’ve never had to join a class-action lawsuit against a company before, it might not seem like a pressing issue. But these things do happen. Take Apple’s butterfly keyboard disaster; the company knew these keyboards were doomed to fail, and yet sold them to customers for years. That case is on-going, but it’s a situation you’d want to be available to join if you bought a MacBook with a butterfly keyboard.

I haven’t set up a new Pixel device in a few years, so I can’t personally comment on what that part of the setup process looks like. But there is a way to opt-out of this shady clause, albeit with some steep limitations.

How to regain your right to join a class-action lawsuit against Google

There’s good news and bad news here. The good news is you can opt out of the arbitration agreement via this link; just make sure you’re logged into the same Google Account as your device, choose your specific device from the list, enter its serial number, then hit Submit.

The bad news, unfortunately, is you lose the ability to opt out of this agreement 30 days after setting up your phone. If you recently bought a new Pixel device, or any other device covered in this agreement, it’s a great time to check if you can opt-out of the agreement.

This agreement only concerns individual products, and not your entire Google Account. If you miss the 30-day window, you don’t lose your right to join a class-action suit against Google for some other reason. Google Home, Pixel Buds, and other devices have their own agreements you can opt-out of within 30 days.

And worth noting: This agreement only concerns Google users in the US. If you’re outside the States, you don’t need to worry about it.

How Cybercriminals Are Using Bitcoin’s Blockchain to Make Botnets Stronger Than Ever

 

Last week, Google announced that it had partially disrupted the operations of a massive botnet—a gargantuan network of over one million malware-infected Windows computers. In the world of cybersecurity, that would be news on its own, but this particular network was using an alarming blockchain integration that makes it tough to beat.

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Black Google Employee Explains Experience With Security: Report

No one seems to like “black” techies….

 

A Black Google employee said he was stopped by security at his job after someone reported him. 

Angel Onuoha, who is an associate product manager at the company and a recent Harvard University graduate tweeted that he was stopped by security staff who didn’t believe he worked for the company, Forbes reported.

“Riding my bike around Google’s campus and somebody called security on me because they didn’t believe I was an employee,” Onuoha said in the viral tweet posted on September 20. “Had to get escorted by two security guards to verify my ID badge.”

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How to Run a Safety Check on Google Chrome

Google Chrome security
Google

This is a good idea to do from time to time…

We’re used to running antivirus scans on our computers, but that doesn’t cover your online safety. For that, Google Chrome offers a tool that lets you perform a similar checkup to secure your web browsing. Here’s how to run a safety check on Chrome.

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Google Allegedly Pressured Smartphone Manufacturers to Hide Privacy Settings

google-athletes-ar-featured-2

None of these tech corporations are to be trusted….

Newly unredacted court documents from a lawsuit against Google reveal that the company reportedly made accessing location settings difficult. This, and other measures made location privacy almost impossible.

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How to Use Bangs in DuckDuckGo (to Search Other Websites)

 

The DuckDuckGo search home page on a laptop screen.
DuckDuckGo

DuckDuckGo is a search engine that respects your privacy by not selling your search history or tracking you across the web. It also has a few nifty features, including bangs, which let you search other websites right from DuckDuckGo. Here’s how.

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New lawsuit: Why do Android phones mysteriously exchange 260MB a month with Google via cellular data when they’re not even in use?

 

 

Very interesting…

Google on Thursday was sued for allegedly stealing Android users’ cellular data allowances though unapproved, undisclosed transmissions to the web giant’s servers.

The lawsuit, Taylor et al v. Google [PDF], was filed in a US federal district court in San Jose on behalf of four plaintiffs based in Illinois, Iowa, and Wisconsin in the hope the case will be certified by a judge as a class action.

The complaint contends that Google is using Android users’ limited cellular data allowances without permission to transmit information about those individuals that’s unrelated to their use of Google services.

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NY Attorney General Orders Black Lives Matter Foundation to Stop Soliciting Donations – NBC New York

I’ll attach a few more links so u can look for yourself… I don’t fuck with Black Lives Matter the group for their LMNOP anti-Black male anti family views but you be the judge…

New York Attorney General Letitia James on Monday ordered the Black Lives Matter Foundation, a California-based charity with no ties to the Black Lives Matter movement, to stop soliciting donations from New Yorkers after the organization has been criticized for misleading those who want to contribute to the movement to end police brutality. Continue reading

How to join an online meeting: Google Hangouts, Zoom, and Skype

online meeting 2

This should be helpful for folks new to videoconferencing….

A lot of daily activity is moving online with countries going into full or partial lockdowns because of COVID-19. To that end, lots of people are learning about new tools that help them work online. If you have to attend online meetings, but are struggling to understand how to join one, we have you covered. Here’s how you can join a Google Hangouts, Zoom, or Skype meeting. Continue reading