Google lied when it said it would allow you to block it from tracking you

My annual birthday-month fund-raising drive for Behind the Black is now on-going. Not only do your donations help pay my bills, they give me the freedom to speak honestly about science and culture, instead of being forced to write it as others demand.


Please consider donating by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar below.


Regular readers can support Behind The Black with a contribution via paypal:

Or with a subscription with regular donations from your Paypal or credit card account:

If Paypal doesn't work for you, you can support Behind The Black directly by sending your donation by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman, to
Behind The Black
c/o Robert Zimmerman
P.O.Box 1262
Cortaro, AZ 85652


You can also support me by buying one of my books, as noted in the boxes interspersed throughout the webpage. And if you buy the books through the ebookit links, I get a larger cut and I get it sooner.

Reason #1,238,435 for not using Google: Google lied when it said you can shut off its location tracking functions on your smartphone. Even if you do so, numerous Google applications ignore that instruction and track you anyway.

Google wants to know where you go so badly that it records your movements even when you explicitly tell it not to.

An Associated Press investigation found that many Google services on Android devices and iPhones store your location data even if you’ve used a privacy setting that says it will prevent Google from doing so. Computer-science researchers at Princeton confirmed these findings at the AP’s request…

Google’s support page on the subject states: “You can turn off Location History at any time. With Location History off, the places you go are no longer stored.”

That isn’t true. Even with Location History paused, some Google apps automatically store time-stamped location data without asking.

The article at the link outlines numerous other examples where Google tracks and records your location, even if you have set your privacy functions to prevent that.

Essentially, the large software companies such as Google and Facebook have no ethics. They are not trustworthy partners, which is why I do not use them. And if an alternative to youtube existed, I would switch from that in a nanosecond.



  • t-dub

    “And if an alternative to youtube existed, I would switch from that in a nanosecond.”

    Looks promising.

  • Mark Howard

    Thanks for the post. I’ve switched by search engine to “” and haven’t looked back. On your mention of YouTube, does that mean you post videos? Or just go to the site and look at videos?


  • t-dub: Yes does look promising. When next I schedule evening pauses, I am going to make an effort to see if I can get the videos from instead of youtube. At a minimum, helping a competitor thrive can only put the fear of God into youtube.

  • Mark Howard: I don’t know how long you have been a reader here, but I post every weekday an evening pause video, usually embedded from youtube. I also embed videos when appropriate to a specific post.

  • Mark Howard: I should add that I have been using both Startpage and DuckDuckGo as my search engines for almost a decade. When I switched, I also went to Google and cleared out my history there. When last I checked about a year ago, that history was still blank.

    Everyone has to be aware that merely switching search engines is not enough. If you use gmail, which I see you do, you are therefore logged onto google at all times. They therefore track what you do, even if you don’t use them. I dumped gmail about six years ago, and when I have to log onto my google account (solely in connection with some googlegroups I run), I do it, get what I need done, and then log off.

  • wodun

    Bitchute is a youtube alternative.

    The problem is that none of the alternatives are very good and everyone wants to use the platform that the most people are on and not use multiple platforms.

    What would be nice is a googless/appleless phone.

  • There’s a lovely girl that lives next door. I keep tabs on who her friends are, where she goes, what she buys. I know when she’s sleeping and when she’s awake. I read her e-mail and listen to her conversations. All my business associates are super thrilled and want to know about her too. If you think I’m a creeper, it’s OK, I’m not an individual and she clicked “I accept”. Oh, I can even improve her thinking and behavior by making sure she’s only exposed to correct things.

  • Andrew

    The problem is basically RTFM.

    All of the apps that can track you, use your microphone, watch you, are all listed on your phone under apps> app permissions.

    Every single one. Yes you can leave an app on that uses the mic. YES that mic will record conversations in your romm. YES that conversation will get uploaded to your Google MyAccount Pages. Where you can find them and delete them.

    With and ANDROID device, YOU are in control. YOU are responsible for making sure some app on your phone does not have permission to spy on you. YOU DO IT! Not Google, Not Samsung, Not some wizard of ANDROID which is largely just a specific release of LINUX anyway.

    But the security on YOUR phone is YOUR job. Currently I went through my phone, on the heels of the phony outcry over this NEW privacy concern. I did have a couple of apps that I had given permission to that I quit using a while ago. I screened Me Google MyAccounts pages and deleted all the data that had been collected.

    The thing is GOOGLE tells you all this. But YOU are required to read what GOOGLE says! And 90% of what people don’t know is found by following the one link people are too lazy to follow. The one that says LEARN MORE.

    It’s all there folks every last bit of it is right there for you to read. But nope, we are gonna whine and cry about how evil Google is instead.

    Jeeze Louize

  • Edward

    You wrote: “It’s all there folks every last bit of it is right there for you to read. But nope, we are gonna whine and cry about how evil Google is instead.

    We used to call this the fine print, and we complained about it as well. Sure it is there, but you have to know that it is there for you to go look for it. Meanwhile, it is (intentionally) buried under pages of boring “information” and legalese that no one wants to know or bother reading.

    Instead, when the company tells us that they are not going to track us anymore, we naively and gullibly believe them. After all, Google is an ethical company and wouldn’t lie to us, right?


  • I should add that I don’t “whine and cry” about Google. I simply do not use their services. They are a unethical company, and I won’t deal with such if I can.

  • Cotour

    Why do I find these to things to be counter intuitive?




    Google will work for the Chinese to surveil all of their citizens and limit what they can and can not see and know and who now have a “social credit system” in place in order to control their population, but they will not work for the U.S. government?

    They will use their skills and technology to oppress the Chinese people and technologically enrich an oppressive government but will not work for the U.S. government. Is Google choosing sides here?

    I do not think that a private company should be able to help an oppressive government to oppress and control their people. Maybe the lines here need to be redrawn? Why does this not compute to me?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *