Didn’t get the memo? Well today Google made an update to their terms of service agreement that allows them to use your name and photo in their own online advertising campaigns. This means that now when you’re searching on Google, you might find ads that looks something like this:
Yes, that smiling face you see could very well be your own, although you won’t see your own, that privilege is reserved for all the other people searching line who aren’t you. The New York Times spotted this change this morning and reported it.
Whenever you comment on, follow or +1 a page while logged in with your Google account, that content can then be used alongside relevant ads. These new endorsements will only be visible to the people who you originally shared that activity with though; most content will therefore be restricted to a specific circle from Google+, although ratings and reviews posted on Google Play or Google+ Local will be visible to the wider public. (Source – The Next Web)
Luckily Google does give you a way to opt out of this however this feature is automatically enabled so if you want to turn it off you’ll have to go through the process. You can find this option in Google Plus under “Shared endorsements” and as I’m sure you can imagine, most people will never notice or make this change.
So here’s the question? Is this a step forward for personalized advertising or a step towards using you to drive sales at 0% commission? Has Google gone too far or is this just par for the course? Comment and let your voice be heard!