May 1st, 2014
Google to stop mining student emails for ad ideas
Google will stop looking for advertising ideas in the emails of students using a suite of the Internet company’s free products tailored for schools. The changes announced Wednesday affect Google’s “Apps for Education” service that has been offered to schools for the past seven years.
Among other things, Google Inc. says it will no longer pore through Gmails sent through Apps for Education for clues about students’ interests. The scanning helps the Mountain View, Calif., company figure out what types of ads might appeal to the students. Although Google didn’t show ads in Apps for Education unless school administrators choose to allow the commercial pitches, the company could still use the personal data collected in Gmail scanning to peddle products when students might be using other online services.
More than 30 million students, teachers and administrators use the Apps for Education suite.