CA Senator Introduces Anti-Gmail Bill

Share this article:
California state Sen. Liz Figueroa, an outspoken critic of Google's new Gmail e-mail system, introduced a bill last week that would ban Google from scanning e-mails to serve text advertiser listings.


Figueroa amended a bill she introduced in February to protect consumers' Social Security numbers. The amended bill would require an e-mail service to get permission from the receiver and sender before scanning messages. The bill exempts scanning for viruses and spam.


In a statement, Figueroa, who has described Gmail's ad method as "like having a massive billboard in the middle of your home," said the bill targets Gmail because "telling people that their most intimate and private e-mail thoughts to doctors, friends, lovers and family members are just another direct marketing commodity isn't the way to promote e-commerce."


In addition to the scanning of messages to display ads, privacy groups object to Google's data policies not pledging to keep search and e-mail information separate, and its plan to store e-mail messages, even those deleted, for an unlimited time.


Google ignited a firestorm of privacy concerns with its April 1 announcement of Gmail. Thirty-one privacy groups asked Google to halt plans to release Gmail until it addresses concerns over the ad system and Google's data retention policy. A United Kingdom privacy group has filed complaints with regulators in 16 countries that Gmail would violate privacy laws in Europe and Canada.


Google has held that Gmail complies with all privacy laws, and it will evaluate feedback from its 1,000 beta testers before making any changes to the service.


The California Senate Judiciary Committee plans to hold hearings on Figueroa's bill on May 4.


Share this article:
You must be a registered member of Direct Marketing News to post a comment.
close

Next Article in Digital Marketing

Follow us on Twitter @dmnews

Latest Jobs:

Featured Listings

More in Digital Marketing

Dollar Growth Rate of Video to Peak This Year

Dollar Growth Rate of Video to Peak This ...

It will increase by 56% to $6 billion, then taper off due to growth in inexpensive mobile placements, says a new study.

Alliance Data Spends $2.3 Billion to Buy Conversant

Alliance Data Spends $2.3 Billion to Buy Conversant

CEO Ed Heffernan says the acquisition "bulks up" the digital marketing power of Alliance and its Epsilon and Loyalty One units.

Time Has Come for Cross-Channel Video Campaigns

Time Has Come for Cross-Channel Video Campaigns

People and Entertainment Weekly team up to deliver one of the first cross-channel video campaigns powered by HTML5.