Big Brother is Watching
Has mega-search engine Google been exposed as a dangerous stalker? It would seem so and if the research done by a Vanderbilt professor proves accurate, it is way past time to kick your friend Google to the curb. Though Google recently made the newswires due to it’s well publicized cover ups of sexual misconduct by executives (showcased by Andy Rubin’s $90 million sexual misconduct severance package), it is the recent spying revelations of this Silicon Valley giant that have Google beanie propellers spinning backwards. And they should have your’s spinning backwards too. One of the main culprits…your android cell phone.
According to the 55 page study compiled by Vanderbilt Professor of Engineering Douglas C. Schmidt, Google’s “Big Brother” data collection practices under a “day in the life” scenario are made possible by the Google Chrome browser running in the background on any idle Android cell phone. The stationary cell phones in the test sent Google data about your, your location and habits 14 times per hour, 24 hours a day. According to Schmidt, “These products are able to collect user data through a variety of techniques that may not be easily graspable by a general user. Google may not know whether you’ve been bad or good but it knows when you’re sleeping and when you’re awake. If you use an Android device with the Chrome browser running, the tech giant knows whether you are traveling by foot or car, where you shop, how often you use your Starbucks app and when you’ve made a doctor’s appointment.”
Fix It Quick
Ready for a new experience that eliminates virtually all of the tracking and spying and will immediately improve your browsing experience as you surf the web? Then it’s time to make the change to Mozilla’s Firefox as your browser and DuckDuckGo as your search engine. Unlike Google Chrome which will track your every move to empower Google’s ad revenue programs, Mozilla’s Firefox is just the opposite and protects your privacy while browsing. And as a browser, Firefox is no slouch. While it clearly does not have the market share of Google’s Chrome, it is a powerful browser which will definitely enhance your browsing experience on the web and protect your privacy at the same time. Where Google’s Chrome has become nothing more than a surveillance system for it’s parent company, Alphabet, Mozilla’s Firefox is now a patriotic defender and for those in-the-know, Firefox has become the number one choice for browsing and protection against spying and data collection. And, making the change to Firefox is relatively simple. As Geoffrey Fowler, technology columnist for the Washington Post said, ” It made me decide to ditch Chrome for a new version of nonprofit Mozilla’s Firefox, which has default privacy protections. Switching involved less inconvenience than you might imagine.”
Go to DuckDuckGo
DuckDuckGo is a search engine with a focus on privacy. In the world of search engines, it is a rapidly rising star and a viable alternative to the virtual spy network that Google has become. Everyone knows that Google’s business model is based on the collection of your personal data, thus creating a profile of YOU! That is exactly what DuckDuckGo does not do. DuckDuckGo is the Google of yesteryear, prior to it developing its spy network and you will see the difference in how DuckDuckGo displays it’s search results.
With Google, it you search or query a particular topic, it will display relevant information based upon your profile it has created through “leeching” information about you based upon your browsing history. Through it’s data collection, it knows what sites you visit and Google then takes it upon itself to determine what you want. With Google, for example, an individual that searches a topic in California is unlikely to get the same results as a person that searches the identical topic in New York. That is not the case with DuckDuckGo whose search results are “pure” and not affected by your particular demographics.
People are getting more and more protective of their personal information and rapidly becoming adverse to large conglomerates like Google that exploit them. And their concerns are not going away. In the battle to maintain your privacy on the internet, make no mistake. Google is the enemy and though a foe to be reckoned with in the privacy wars, you can win a significant battle simply by replacing Google with DuckDuckGo as your default search engine. In fact, when it comes to browsing the web and protecting your privacy, the combination of Mozilla’s Firefox and DuckDuckGo are almost unbeatable.
Are You a Blogger? Then Assassinate Google AdSense
So is Google a stalker? You bet. It’s a stealthy spy of the worst kind. But that is just the beginning of bad habits when it comes to Google and as a mobile creative entrepreneur, there’s a few more things you should know about Google’s bad habits. And first we”ll look at the love / hate relationship with Google AdSense.
If you are a blogger and monetizing your website, you may have considered AdSense. To be certain, you can generate revenue by allowing Google to run ads on your blog. But at what real cost? Have you ever been to a blog or website where 10, 20, 30 ads are displayed for exactly the same product? Perhaps you were looking for a new Panama hat and just visited a retailer’s website. Maybe you even purchased the hat. Now you visit a site running Google Adsense and see dozens of images and ads for the same hat you just purchased. Now don’t get us wrong. If you want to sign up and run ads for your products on someone else’s website and ruin the browsing experience of THEIR visitors, be our guest. Just do not ruin you own blog or site and your visitor’s experience by allowing Google Adsense to run on yours. There are much better (and more profitable) ways to monetize your blog or website and your visitors will love you for it. So ditch Adsense and use these 4 ways to better monetize your blog or business website.
Generic Affiliate Marketing
If you want to monetize your website without Adsense, affiliate marketing may be the best way to do it. Joining affiliate programs is easier than you think and for bloggers, is recognized as the easiest way to make money. With affiliate marketing, you do not need to be selling a product and you do not need a store. All you do is promote the products of others and when someone clicks on your website’s link and buys the product, you earn a commission. When you sign up as an affiliate, you can typically choose a type of ad that will contain a “cookie” or affiliate code that identifies you and your site to the merchant. You will strategically place the ad next to or within the text of a post or content on your site that contains information relevant to the affiliated product. Two excellent sources for merchants offering affiliate programs are ShareASale and Commission Junction.
Skimlinks acts as a “hub” for affiliate programs and represents thousands (over 48,000) of individual merchants and you can view a list of merchants here. Basically, if you publish a blog or website that contains “product related” content, then Skimlinks can be a great way for you to monetize. And,the beauty of Skimlinks is that your site or blog can earn affiliate revenue from any of those merchants without the necessity of signing up with them individually as a publishing affiliate. Instead, all you need do is sign up with Skimlinks.
Amazon Native Ads
Amazon is the world’s largest affiliate program and one of the features of Amazon Affiliates is something called “Native Shopping Ads”. Native Shopping Ads works differently than Google’s AdSense in that while AdSense pays you for clicks, Native Shopping Ads pays you on sales. Additionally, since Amazon is the world’s most recognized and trusted retailer, it is not much harder to get Amazon sales vs. clicks. Native Shopping Ads provide highly relevant and dynamic product recommendations in a stylishly designed and responsive ad unit that can be placed at the end of content or within the content to create a more compelling visitor experience and shopping opportunity.
Infolinks Ads are a great way to monetize your blog or website. Each time a visitor to your site clicks on a link or buys a product, you will earn a commission. Additionally, there are a variety of ad formats to suit the needs of publishers and to view ad types, click here. Revenue from Infolinks will typically be less than Adsense but their display options are first rate and will be much less likely to disturb your site’s visitors.