Google Responds To Privacy Concerns With Unsettlingly Specific Apology

Top Headlines

Science & Technology

What Smoking A Cigarette Does To The Body

With the FDA recently pulling multiple cigarette brands off the market, the conversation surrounding the harmful effects of smoking has been returning in full force to the national stage. Here is what happens to your body as you smoke a cigarette

Alarming Report Finds Only 6% Of Earth’s Surface Indoors

LAWRENCE, KS—Drawing attention to the distressing prevalence of outside areas on the planet, researchers at the University of Kansas released an alarming report Monday revealing that a mere 6 percent of the Earth’s surface is actually indoors.

Meteorologists Say Upcoming Hurricane Season To Be Permanent

SILVER SPRING, MD—Warning residents to prepare for extreme winds, heavy rainfall, and flooding starting in the near future and continuing indefinitely, meteorologists at the National Weather Service announced Friday that the upcoming hurricane season would be permanent.

NASA Deploys Congressional Rover To Search For Funding

WASHINGTON—Calling the program “the most crucial in the agency’s history,” researchers at NASA announced Wednesday they have successfully deployed a Special Exploratory Rover to Congress as part of an open-ended mission to seek out any possible trace of funding on Capitol Hill.

What The Planet Will Look Like In 2100

As scientists try to project the effects of climate change into the future, many of these forecasts only go as far as 2100, a year beyond which the alterations to our environment become much harder to predict. Here is a breakdown of what we can expect our world to look like in 2100

What You Need To Know About ‘Female Viagra’

The FDA recently approved the sale of Flibanserin, a pink pill intended for women diagnosed with low sex drive; critics have questioned the pill’s effectiveness, while advocates are praising the move toward supporting both men and women with these sexual issues. Here are some of the most common questions about Flibanserin

GMOs: Myth vs. Fact

Consumers have consistently distrusted the use of genetically modified organisms in their food, believing that they make food unsafe for consumption, although a majority of scientific evidence contradicts these views. Here are the common myths associated with GMOs and the facts that refute them

Timeline Of Google’s History

Google recently announced the formation of Alphabet, an umbrella corporation that will separate the company’s internet search business from its forays into robotics, biotechnology, and other areas of innovation. Here are some of the most notable milestones in Google’s 17-year history:

How Hackers Steal Data From Websites

With millions of Americans’ personal information becoming compromised by recent high-profile data breaches, many people are wondering just how anonymous hackers target and infiltrate these supposedly secure systems. Here is a step-by-step explanation of how your data can be stolen

Man’s Body Running Out Of Ideas To Convince Him He Full

BAYTOWN, TX—Having repeatedly ratcheted up the 34-year-old’s level of discomfort with no noticeable effect on his behavior, the body of local man Kent Dugan confirmed Wednesday that it was starting to run out of ideas to convince him that he was full.

How Apple Plans To Rebound From Apple Watch Flop

With sales of the Apple Watch reportedly down 90 percent since its initial release, Apple is suffering in the wearables market and faces a lack of enthusiasm about its latest product. Here are some ways Apple can improve the watch and prevent the company from falling into a slump:

Astronomers Just Going To Go Ahead And Say Dark Matter Nitrogen

‘Fuck It, We’re Done,’ Say Scientists

WASHINGTON—Declaring that this is the last time they ever hope to speak of the aggravatingly enigmatic substance, astronomers from NASA announced Thursday that they are just going to go ahead and say that dark matter is nitrogen.

What We’ve Learned About Pluto

Nearly 10 years after its launch, the New Horizons space probe made a flyby 7,750 miles from Pluto, marking the first time in history a spacecraft has examined the dwarf planet up close, and NASA has begun to release data and images transmitted from the approach. Here’s what we’ve learned about Pluto so far

Timeline Of Mass Extinction

Scientists predict that human activity has put the world on the brink of the sixth mass extinction in earth’s history, an event characterized by the elimination of a large number of species within a very short period of time. Here is a timeline of extinction events over the planet’s history

Study: Floating Heap Of Trash Now Ocean’s Apex Predator

SANTA BARBARA, CA—Noting that no marine species posed a threat and the total domination of its habitat, a study released Wednesday by researchers at the University of California, Santa Barbara revealed that the floating mass of trash known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is now the ocean’s apex predator.

Dementia Study Reveals Fond Memories First To Go

BALTIMORE—Researchers at Johns Hopkins University published a new study this week on the cognitive effects of Alzheimer’s disease and other deteriorative brain disorders, finding conclusive evidence that dementia sufferers’ fondest memories are nearly always the first to go.

FDA Approves Female-Libido-Enhancing Man

WASHINGTON—In an effort to address the needs of women suffering from a lack of sexual desire, the FDA announced Tuesday that it had approved a new female-libido-enhancing man, which is expected to be made available to the general public by year’s end.

New Report Finds Humanity 10 Years Away From Something Called Ash Age

TUCSON, AZ—Explaining that the large-scale shift in geologic conditions and social organization would require a new taxonomic classification, researchers at the University of Arizona released a report Tuesday revealing that humanity is approximately 10 years away from something that will be called the Ash Age.

NASA Announces Bold Plan To Still Exist By 2045

WASHINGTON—In what is being described as the most ambitious mission ever undertaken in the space agency’s history, NASA officials announced at a press conference Tuesday their bold new plan to still exist by 2045.

YouTube Turns 10

On April 23, 2005, three former PayPal employees started a video-sharing site called YouTube, which has since grown into an influential media platform with over 1 billion users.

Pros And Cons Of Screen Time For Kids

As technology becomes more of a staple in everyday family life, parents are making choices about how much screen time to allow their children—and asking questions about how computers, phones, and TVs might help or hinder a child’s development.

Geologists Unearth Fully Intact Rock

FORT COLLINS, CO—Describing the discovery as the most flawless specimen ever unearthed, a team of geologists working in northern Colorado announced Friday they had excavated a fully intact rock.

Rehabilitated Otter Released Back Into Food Chain

SAUSALITO, CA—Following nine months of surgeries and physical therapy to heal the aquatic animal’s debilitating injuries, officials from the Marine Mammal Center released a fully rehabilitated sea otter back into the food chain Tuesday.

Conservationists Attempting To Get Head Start On Mars

WASHINGTON—Fearing that any further delay might prevent their movement from having any meaningful impact, a consortium of leading conservationists confirmed Wednesday it is attempting to get a head start on preserving the planet Mars. The newly form...

Apple MacBook vs. Google Chromebook Pixel

Shortly after Apple debuted its new ultra-thin MacBook this week, Google announced its new Chromebook Pixel 2, which similarly boasts the new Type-C USB port and high-tech trackpad.

How Cable Companies Plan To Fight Cord Cutting

More consumers than ever are “cord cutting,” or getting rid of their cable service in favor of watching shows online, challenging the cable industry to launch new initiatives in order to keep customers.

Features Of The Apple Car

After dominating sales of smartphones, tablets, and other electronics, Apple is reportedly secretly designing its first car, code-named Titan.

2015 Tech Trends

Showcasing everything from wearable devices to self-driving cars and personal drones, this year’s Consumer Electronics Show revealed the latest in new technology.

Doctors Recommend Getting 8 Centuries Of Cryosleep

STANFORD, CA—Claiming that the practice is essential for effectively recharging the body and waking fully rested and alert, doctors at Stanford University issued a report Monday emphasizing the importance of getting at least eight centuries of atomi...

Scientists Receive $10 Million Grant To Melt Stuff

COLLEGE PARK, MD—Saying the money would help further researchers’ understanding of the awesome scientific phenomenon, representatives for the American Institute of Physics announced Tuesday that they had received a $10 million grant to melt st...
End Of Section
  • More News
Up Next
TV Listings
Just Like Everything Else!: Fox 8 p.m. EDT/7 p.m. ABC Pete's wife is still on him about building that darn shed, these kids are going to be the death of Sheila and Dave, and the hot next-door neighbor is up in EVERYBODY'S business! Sunday nights on ABC couldn't be any more familiar!

Special Coverage

Healthy Living


College Freshman Decides To Be Lanyard-Wearing Kind

ANN ARBOR, MI—Emphasizing that this was not a choice he had made lightly, University of Michigan student Kevin Peterson told reporters Thursday that he had officially decided to become one of the lanyard-wearing kind of freshmen.

Google Responds To Privacy Concerns With Unsettlingly Specific Apology

The company hopes to make things right again with Elaine Rankin of Vero Beach, FL but admits that, "knowing her," it could take years.
The company hopes to make things right again with Elaine Rankin of Vero Beach, FL but admits that, "knowing her," it could take years.

MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA—Responding to recent public outcries over its handling of private data, search giant Google offered a wide-ranging and eerily well-informed apology to its millions of users Monday.

"We would like to extend our deepest apologies to each and every one of you," announced CEO Eric Schmidt, speaking from the company's Googleplex headquarters. "Clearly there have been some privacy concerns as of late, and judging by some of the search terms we've seen, along with the tens of thousands of personal e-mail exchanges and Google Chat conversations we've carefully examined, it looks as though it might be a while before we regain your trust."

Google expressed regret to some of its third-generation Irish-American users on Smithwood between Barlow and Lake.

Added Schmidt, "Whether you're Michael Paulson who lives at 3425 Longview Terrace and makes $86,400 a year, or Jessica Goldblatt from Lynnwood, WA, who already has well-established trust issues, we at Google would just like to say how very, truly sorry we are."

Schmidt's apology appeared suddenly at 9 a.m. Monday on Google's homepage, Chrome browser, and YouTube, as well as on every single Android-enabled cell phone, and sought to reassure Americans that the company would take all necessary steps to keep confidential information, from Social Security numbers to Gonorrhea test results, absolutely safe.

Acknowledging that Google hasn't always been open about how it mines the roughly 800 terabytes of personal data it has gathered since 1998, Schmidt apologized to users— particularly the 1,237,948 who take daily medication to combat anxiety—for causing any unnecessary distress, and he expressed regret—especially to Patricia Fort, a single mother taking care of Jordan, Sam, and Rebecca, ages 3, 7, and 9—for not doing more to ensure that private information remains private.

Monday's apology comes after the controversial launch of Google Buzz, a social networking platform that publicly linked Gmail users to their most e-mailed contacts by default.

"I'd like nothing more than to apologize in person to everyone we've let down, but as you can see, many of our users are rarely home at this hour," said Google cofounder and president Sergey Brin, pointing to several Google Map street-view shots of empty bedroom and living room windows on a projection screen behind him. "And, if last night's searches are any indication, Boston's Robert Hornick is probably out shopping right now for the spaghetti and clam sauce he'll be cooking tonight."

"Either that, or hunting down that blond coworker of his, Samantha, whose Picasa photos he stares at every night," Brin added.

While admitting that security measures need to improve, Google officials also claimed that everyone makes mistakes, be it storing confidential data indefinitely or, say, "having a few too many drinks on the evening of Jan. 23, driving home in a haze, striking a pedestrian on the corner of Mercer and Cavendish, speeding off, and then desperately searching online for hit and run laws, right, Karen?"

"Americans have every right to be angry at us," Google spokesperson Janet Kemper told reporters. "Though perhaps Dale Gilbert should just take a few deep breaths and go sit in his car and relax, like they tell him to do at the anger management classes he attends over at St. Francis Church every Tuesday night."

"Breathe in, breathe out," Kemper added. "We wouldn't want you to have another incident, Dale. Not when you've been doing so well."

In an effort to make up for years of alarmingly invasive service, Google will automatically add $50 to all American bank accounts as a gesture of goodwill. The company has also encouraged feedback, explaining that users can type any concerns they may still have into any open browser window or, if they are members of Google Voice, "simply speak directly into [their] phones right now."

Either way, the company said, "We'll know."

So far, Google users across the country have responded cautiously to the company's public admission of wrongdoing, with some claiming they will be careful not to reveal any personal information from now on, and others ripping up their credit cards, unplugging all electronic devices from their outlets, and locking themselves in their bathrooms away from any cameras, keyboards, satellite dishes, or cell phones.

"I forgive Google, I forgive Google, I forgive Google," said Ohio resident Darla Mackenzie, sitting on the edge of her bathtub, her head in her hands. "Please, please, don't tell Jonathan about the things I have done."