If you’ve logged into GMail or Google Reader recently, you may have noticed Google Buzz, a new social networking platform from Google. I don’t think Buzz is very useful, but whether you use Buzz or not, your Google profile was set to “public” by default. That means that regardless of your previous privacy setting, your Google profile could be viewed by anyone — including your contact lists. Ars Technica ran an article about the privacy concerns today, but if you want to skip ahead to the “how the hell do I disable Google Buzz?” part, here’s my tutorial. I recommend everyone do this as soon as possible.
Important note: this will delete your public Google profile
- Log into Gmail. If I need to explain to you how to do this I suggest you remove one battery from your Speak & Spell and then swallow it.
- Click the Settings link near the top of the page:
- Click the “Buzz” link in the sub-navigation near the top of the page. As of this writing, it’s the far right option:
- Click the “Disable Google Buzz”‘ link:
- Confirm your desire to disable Google Buzz. This will also delete your public Google profile.
There you have it. I really wish Google Buzz had been an opt-in service, and that’s the number one reason I recommend that folks disable it. Whether Google fixes the privacy snafus or not, I don’t think it’s appropriate to enable an entirely new service to users by default. I had to opt-in for Gmail, Google Reader, and Wave; why should I automatically get Buzz? And furthermore, why would Google think that I wanted to share my contact list with the rest of the world?
More like Google Buzz off, amirite?