When Gawker posted a clip of Eric Schmidt telling Maria Bartiromo that you shouldn’t do anything you want to keep private…
I think judgment matters. If you have something that you don’t want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn’t be doing it in the first place. If you really need that kind of privacy, the reality is that search engines — including Google — do retain this information for some time and it’s important, for example, that we are all subject in the United States to the Patriot Act and it is possible that all that information could be made available to the authorities.
… Gawker focused on the hypocrisy of Schmidt making such a statement.
That’s what the Google CEO told Maria Bartiromo during CNBC’s big Google special last night, an extraordinary pronouncement for such a secretive guy.
The generous explanation for Schmidt’s statement is that he’s revolutionized his thinking since 2005, when he blacklisted CNET for publishing info about him gleaned from Google searches, including salary, neighborhood, hobbies and political donations.
But I’m rather more interested in Schmidt’s focus on the PATRIOT Act:
we are all subject in the United States to the Patriot Act and it is possible that all that information could be made available to the authorities
This is the CEO of Google–a company that, four years ago, fought to avoid letting Alberto Gonzales get its searches in the name of preventing pornography–telling you that everything you do on Google “could be made available” to the authorities. Which I presume means it is being made available…