I’ve written about getting rid of Google before, and that was before the whole NSA/PRISM shitstorm. I’m sure people today find even more reasons to get Google out of their lives.
I wasn’t just doing nothing all this time either. Since the last post, the following has happened:
- My contacts are synced with my own CardDAV server instead of to Google, so Google won’t get their hands on my friends’, colleagues’ and family’s personal data through me anymore.
- My calendar goes to my own CalDAV server, so Google no longer knows what I’m doing when, where and with whom.
- DuckDuckGo has improved so much as a search engine that I don’t feel like I’m missing something by not searching on Google anymore.
One problem still remains: I use an Android device, so you never know what else Google might be collecting through there. I’m watching Jolla and Sailfish as well as Firefox OS to see if and when there is some way to get a truly independent mobile device. That is the only piece of the puzzle still missing, and Google Play is the only way Google still gets at my stuff.
I have installed the Amazon Appstore and SAM next to Google Play, but the former is just swapping out one evil for another while the latter sometimes doesn’t have the app I’m looking for.
But it already feels much better to be the master of my own data again. I don’t know how Google entranced all of us nerds in the first place. Sure, Gmail was a much sexier email system than any of us had ever seen, back then. But nowadays, with decent Free Software alternatives and Google turning more and more into a closed social network and advertisement agency like Facebook, hosting our stuff ourselves seems like a hot idea again.
Also: decentralization. It’s one of the cornerstones of this whole Internet thing. Why should we give that up and entrust very few, very large companies with our data in a centralized fashion instead of creating a robust, decentralized system?