If you’re a Dropbox user, you probably got an email in the last few days about an update to their TOS that basically puts all disputes into arbitration rather than litigation.
If you’re like me, you probably glossed over this update because gah, legalese.
Allow me to summarize what it means when a company wants to handle all disputes in arbitration:
No matter what they do (delete your data, privacy breach, overcharging, whatever), you don’t get to sue. Instead, THEY get to choose the arbitrator according to whatever criteria they want, and thus any dispute is decided by someone they’re paying.
Also, you can’t join a class-action suit against them. Which sounds like no big deal, but when a company takes advantage of a bunch of people all in the same small way (incorrectly assessing a service charge, for example), class action is how companies are made to clean up their act en masse, instead of waiting for thousands of people to call them up and demand their $20 back or whatever.
I love Dropbox and use/recommend it enthusiastically. But this is a company that we entrust with some of our most important data- the kind of data we need to have access to wherever we are. Family photos, portfolios, projects representing years of work, etc. And as we’ve seen with Google buying Nest, even if we trust the management team in charge of our data right now, that’s not guaranteed in the future. Founders move on to other things. Companies with great products get acquired. Business decisions get made that change the direction of the company.
The agreement we make with Dropbox is too important to be enforced only by an arbitrator of their choosing. You have 30 days from the date of notification to opt out of the arbitration clause. Do it now.
Important info for ALL dropbox users. You should do this immediately.
New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter announces on Facebook that the 2014 season will be his last.
I know, you are expecting me to crow and say bye bye to Jeter. Nope. Not gunna happen. I love this dude. As a Sox fan I’m not a fan of the pinstripes, but it’s a sibling kind of rivalry not a grudge match. The Yankees have been a constant to me, even before I loved baseball, and Jeter’s been playing in the MLB since I was 10. I know baseball because of guys like him.
He’s one of the best to play the game and I can’t fault anyone who loves their team and their town as much as he does. It was great to watch the Sox play against him, and I loved it because he was a worthy adversary. I know I’ll be teary when he plays his last game, which barring a post season berth, will be at Fenway. Something tells me that send off is going to be pretty special.
Derek Jeter may have single-handedly wrecked the A’s playoff run back in 2001, but the dude’s just amazing. Good career, Jeter.
I may hate the Yankees with the white-hot fury of a thousand suns, but Jeter has always had my respect. He’s just a great ballplayer, and it’s always sad to see the great ones leave.
Who/what caused you to fall in love with Braves baseball?
When I was young my grandparents lived in Atlanta, and my grandfather was an equipment supplier to the team (I’m can’t remember what he sold). This was back in the 70s and 80s when the team was at Atlanta–Fulton County Stadium. He apparently had a ton of access to the team, and even had stories of hanging out with the players in the locker room.
My grandfather really influenced my love for the Braves when I was a kid. He would take me to games whenever I was in town. I don’t remember many of them since I was so young, but I do still remember the feeling of that stadium and getting to go to a major league baseball game (we had the Tidewater Tides where I’m from, so AAA was the best we got). My favorite player growing up was Dale Murphy, most certainly because he was my grandfather’s favorite player.
Unfortunately I was too young to be able to meet any of the players while he was still working. He died in 1994, just one year shy of the Braves winning the World Series in 1995. That victory was bittersweet, because I knew how much my grandfather would have loved to see that happen.
So I’ve loved the Braves since before I can remember, all thanks to my amazing grandfather.
Maddux was convinced no hitter could tell the speed of a pitch with any meaningful accuracy. To demonstrate, he pointed at a road a quarter-mile away and said it was impossible to tell if a car was going 55, 65 or 75 mph unless there was another car nearby to offer a point of reference.
“You just can’t do it,” he said. Sometimes hitters can pick up differences in spin. They can identify pitches if there are different releases points or if a curveball starts with an upward hump as it leaves the pitcher’s hand. But if a pitcher can change speeds, every hitter is helpless, limited by human vision.
“Except,” Maddux said, “for that [expletive] Tony Gwynn.”
Great write up about one of the greatest pitchers of all time. The article makes me wonder when we’ll see another pitcher with the strategy of Maddux.
Please, Google! Please do install a vast, anonymous array of sensors in my home, the use of which is governed only by terms of service no one ever reads and that you can change at any time without my prior consent. Let’s do this!
It seems utterly quaint that maybe 15 years ago, back in my private investigator days, the government blocked public records data vendor, Choicepoint (Think Spotify for every public record ever filed, and the ability to make a downloadable Genius playlist for the greatest hits from anyone’s life - and the DRM? Pretty perfunctory. ) from acquiring Doubleclick, an at-the-time hot banner ad company. I can only imagine the notion of a company with the theoretical ability to connect a person’s public record with her real-time online activity made some sensible people nauseous.
Doubleclick was later acquired by Google, obviously!
Wearables and in-home sensors - the internet of things and the quantified life… There is so much benefit to be gained from these new technologies but we can’t simply surrender all the good of these advancements to the tyranny of terms of service.
Because… the next round of advancements in personal tech will be the consumer implantables and the injectables. And we’re already facing the reality that any networked device or service that flows through Google’s insatiable, data-loving maw bears serious scrutiny.
Maybe Nest will never change a thing about their products and maybe Google will never attempt to assimilate that data. But I don’t believe that they would have bought the company in the first place if they weren’t aiming to try…
It’s a shame, because I was really in love with Nest’s vision. I was looking forward to outfitting our new home with their products. But with Nest’s acquisition by Google I can only guess they’ll ultimately get new marching orders - orders that somehow, some way involve delivering us to advertisers.
And that sucks.
My thoughts exactly. I had planned on purchasing both of their products for my home (once the thermostat was compatible with my Trane system), but now? Thanks but no thanks, Google.