Trust No One … Google Included

I am a big fan of Google – I like services it offers, as well as Google “attitude” toward outside world.

Once when you start using those services, and transfer most of your digital life online, you are hooked – possibility to access/create all of data from anywhere and virtually from any device which interprets html (and that means your mobile phone) is something that you will appreciate much.

Well, maybe “was” is better tense for first sentence; and of course, being human, just one simple thing was enough to change this: they blocked my Google Account (and related GMail account):

Google Disabled My Account

For no apparent reason (one night I was sending my mail and next morning I was presented with dreadful message) I got “Sorry, your account has been disabled”. This is not just access to mail, but to Google Docs, Google Notebook, Google Reader, Google Bookmarks – just to mention ones that I use most often.

Of course, I was vaguely aware that this possibility (to get account disabled) exists, but I was also thinking that it is reserved for bad violation of Terms of Use and I was not even close to this; my usage was just regular mail usage – none of unusual activities mentioned in help / troubleshooting documents or in related posts in GMail help groups.

Also, disruptive and unannounced access restriction to the same online repository can hurt you a lot.

Add on top of that very slow response of Google Support (third day, and I have two automated responses and one form filling) and no idea when or even if I would get access to my account again – that put serious doubts in my decision to give trust to Google as big and “good” firm with my data.

Google is not nice; Google is just another company in search for steady and infinite revenue streams; all “free” services it offers are just way to expand market where ads (as main source of revenue) can be placed.

As soon as my account is enabled, I will change two things right away – change/add new online “office” provider (I am testing Zoho now) and backup all of the stuff regularly to desktop (good old offline storage) – my data and time invested to create them is of utmost importance.

Update: they enabled my account after four days; as expected, no explanation was given why account was suspended in a first place. Not nice – 4 days in speedy and busy everyday life w/o mail and many of documents and notes is at least “not nice”. Maybe all those services are free, but I would rather pay some amount for benefit of having telephone support around of clock.