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Bear Comments

Ooh. Look, Mac user... Shiny Frog... screw your privacy... the frog is... so shiny...

Comment by JohnFastman
about Bear and Google Keep, Evernote, Apple Mail · Mar 2017 · 1 Helpful

Search "productivity" on Youtube and discover no end of hipsterific, Mac-oriented advice-beardies extolling the virtues of overtly privacy-violating services like Google, Evernote and Dropbox. Services that either directly leverage your privacy for profit (Google), store your data in viewable form (all three) and/or are compelled by US law to give up all of this to US authorities without even telling their customers (again, all three). "Productivity" is fast becoming a by-word for "Please take all my personal information, make money from it, give it to the authorities and... please, please, give it to others."

So, you should pause and ask about Bear. The app, and the necessities.

What does it do with your notes? In which legal jurisdiction is it based? Just where, exactly, does your data reside? Well, let me start by pointing out that presently (22nd March 2017) "Privacy" is not even a word, never mind a link, on their website. That should worry you profoundly and certainly as much as a shiny user interface makes you feel warm and comfortable. Just think about your priorities there, btw. Do you care less about how your own thoughts are presented to you than who stores them?

Bear is made by Shiny Frog, an Italian company. If you didn't know that but you use them, you'd do well to ask whether it matters to you that your dream diary, shortlist of tattoo designs or pseudo-beatnik love notes ends up in this legal framework or the other. Or don't you think the wrong government or corporate policy might use/leak/be subpoeanad to give them up for use against you? Well, anyway, Shiny Frog... (...ooh... look... shiny....) use Google Analytics) - not good. Go on... click the "Google Analytics" link and have a read.

So you have to ask. What is your Apple/Evernote alternative, really? And in a system where everything you wrote down was read by an over-arching information system driven by profit... is that where you see your ideals come to fruition? Where you'd want to raise your children?

And if you're in doubt: no, it's not sarcastic. You type into your "Apple". Where do the words go? You're paying for them to go, after all. So, where do they go? And why there? And who makes that decision? And what does it mean, for you and your thoughts? And what do you mean when you say "it's free"? And what do you mean when you think you are "free"?

Free to use Google? Or properly free?