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back to article Buzzed Gmail outs Googly ties of Obama's deputy CTO

It would be hard to imagine a better Google story. If the company's own web services somehow outed the most intimate secrets of CEO Eric Schmidt - a man who says net privacy is only for miscreants - that would surely be the Google story to end all Google stories. But a comeuppance of such epic proportions seems too much to ask. …

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Big Brother

Personal

Can we assume that since he now works with the government, he will have a government email address.?I'm sure his gmail address is used as his "personal" email. Then why is it so wrong that he is still in contact with people from google in his personal email? Should he cut all ties with his old friends just because he got a new job? Is it fair then that he should have all of these emails released under freedom of information? Its a difficult one to call.

Unless of course the government is using google apps for email.... well then we should just lie down and get ready for the Thought Police

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FAIL

There's no "personal email" at that level

"Should he cut all ties with his old friends just because he got a new job?"

You call them friends, I call them partners, which prove that he's still actually working for Google and not for Obama. Nor, for heavens, for the people.

There is no such thing as "personal email" at that level of administration, _everything_ is reflecting your job and position.

Everything. Even your so called "personal life" at home.

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FAIL

The most delicious irony!

Apart from the fact that there is nothing sinister in this guy's contact list including Google employees (they may well be his friends as well as legitimate contacts), this has to be the loveliest demonstration of a "feature" that would be called a bug by anyone else!

I can't imagine what Buzz would do to my email contact list - I am just glad that I don't use G-mail (or similar) that can be mined by a social networking bot (apparently without express orders to do so (although this isn't clear from the article). At the very least, this should not be public by default - surely we all know by now that default is to turn this kind of thing OFF and require the user to specifically activate it.

Ho Hum, said Pooh.

I am not sure I should be more or less worried that Google is so heavily entrenched in the Obama administration. I can't say as I feel too good about the wishy-washy touchy-feely Google-bots in the White House, but I am sure that is what most of Obama's team are anyway. Maybe the Google people at least have some executive experience - not conspicuously visible otherwise.

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Black Helicopters

Now just for the Microsoft link...

"Only Microsoft and Goldman Sachs employees gave more."

But was Sonal Shah counted then as Googler or when she was Vice President of Goldman Sachs?

https://www.changemakers.com/user/3018

Inquiring minds, you know...

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But...but...but...

their motto is "do no evil"! Surely their definition of evil is the same as every other person under the sun...oh, wait.

A character in Ray Bradbury's book, "Something Wicked This Way Comes", pointed out that evil would naturally view something that was good as evil.

Anyway, I think we should have a personal statement from each Google employee for how that person defines "evil", updated daily, and then put a word cloud on the Google front page which shows the things Google will mostly be trying not to do on that day. That should help set our expectations.

Perhaps they could update their definition more frequently over an IRC channel that feeds the word cloud. That way I can determine with each search whether I want to trust Google or not and will have fair warning when I need to start clearing my Google cookies and using an anonymizer.

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Bronze badge
Unhappy

Thanks El Reg

Web 2.0 is not counter-point to the Bush Era Secrecy Fest. They are just two cars on the same train. The worshipers of Web 2.0 are louder with shorter attention spans, but basically the same sheep version 1.0.

Sort of funny that the CTO of the US had to "request" a software change when he should have been asking who gave Google Hover rights to begin with. I suppose he was flattered to be a "help to the cause". Um, every Private in that Army gets a medal for Heroism.

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Silver badge

He should resign...

Does anyone else but me see a problem where an official of the government maintains an outside e-mail account?

I think this is akin to a stock broker stepping out of his office to call his clients on his cell, instead of using his recorded line.

The point is that using a personal e-mail account means that the individual may or may not have had contact with individuals that should have been recorded as part of his official duties.

At a minimum, there should be an ethics investigation in to his communication with former Google associates and lobbyists.

Massive fail on the part of Obama's administration.

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ha

This is the best thing i've read on reg in quite awhile. The only thing that could be better would be the mainstream media reporting on it.

We hear about black people hanging nooses on their doors no matter what part of the country it happens in. However something like this happens, that proves how corrupt washington is and nothing is said in the mainstream, I guess it's not a big deal.

On the other hand this does fit into place with Obamas transparent government. One can only imagine what Barack Hussein Obamas buzz list would look like

Im sure randomly picking 5 people from it would be enough to get an ordinary joe watched by the FBI since we all know who Barack is friends with (terrorists and america haters).

Ah well, im sure theres more of this to come, stay tuned.

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right

This will likely just blow over and be lost in the noise of crap the US government does but if it does blow up into something then I have only one thing to say:

"Googlegate"

Remember you saw it here first people, I may need you to testify.

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Have to agree with Allan Leo ;

Cade Metz seems here to be attempting to make a rather large mountain out of a rather small molehill. One can - and should - question the common Washington practice of recruiting regulators from the industries they are set to regulate, but leaving that aside, I find nothing in Andrew McLaughlin's bio on the Harvard Berkman Centre's website (http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/people/amclaughlin) or on ICAAN's (http://www.icann.org/en/biog/mclaughlin.htm) that leads me to believe that the Apocalypse is upon us. Rather than outing his Buzz contacts, the Reg and its journalists would do better to keep their eyes and ears open for any indication that his contacts with Google employees are, in fact, unduly influencing his decision in his new job. But that might require a bit more effort on their part than checking out Buzzes....

Henri

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*If its good for Google, its good for America"

Type your comment here — plain text only, no HTML

Why not have a member of one of the worlds most successful internet companies in the White House? He might do something like try to bring high speed internet to all of America. The Secretary of Defense During WW2 also happened to be the head of GM, he created America's Highway system. Yes it was good for GM but it was also good for America.

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Unhappy

"Good for America."

"The Secretary of Defense During WW2 also happened to be the head of GM, he created America's Highway system. Yes it was good for GM but it was also good for America."

Really. Because massive rail interconnects would not have been the better choice? IIRC they are better on fuel for hauling cargo. (Be that bulk or self-loading.) With the whole dependence on Oil thing, global warming and other worries; seems like encouraging the uptake of the personal automobile was one of the single dumbest ideas in all of history.

Sort of like how GM murdered (via graft and politics) the electric trolley in order to replace them with diesels that were manufactured by GM.

Oh yeah, big business in government.

Always looking out for the little guy.

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Big Brother

Good video on that...

Had to watch it in college, called "Taken For A Ride".

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0236785/

All about how GM basically destroyed our streetcar system. It kills me that 50 years later, politicians who are dealing with angry voters who are tired of gridlock are suggesting.... wait for it.... Light Rail! Yes streetcars will solve everything. God we are dumb sometimes.

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"good for America"

Malcolm, are you being ironic about misinformation on the web? Not one of your historical facts is correct. "The Secretary of Defense During WW2 also happened to be the head of GM, he created America's Highway system. Yes it was good for GM but it was also good for America."

First, there was no Secretary of Defense in World War II. Second, the head of GM, Charles Wilson, during the later period of WWII became the SecDef at the end of the Korean War (he was the source of the "good for GM..." quote.) Third, the chief force behind America's highways was Pres Eisenhower because of his obervations about the Autobahn's ability to move matériel and personnel for war mobilisation.

That said, it was Eisenhower who warned of the Military-Industrial Complex a few years after firing Wilson, just before his successor nominated former Ford chief Robert McNamara to run the Pentagon.

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