Cloud Storage, IP Issues and Google Drive

Google has recently launched its online storage system, albeit late to the game. Dropbox, Microsoft’s SkyDrive, Apple’s iCloud are all out there already with varying differences, but mostly offering virtual storage across a wide variety of platforms and devices for multiple files types. While these services are free and offer great ways of storing and sharing documents back and forth between devices and with other users, be careful about who you are “giving” your files to as Google is telling users in the terms of service that they may use, host, store, reproduce, modify, create derivative works from, communicate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute your content. Another file storing service, Box.com posts a similar sentence in their terms of use (go to site and click “Terms” at the very bottom o the page).

I am as guilty as many who blindly click through the Terms of Use statements that software vendors are required to display to new users. And I am sure many people don’t care that much about it. They just want as much as they can get for “free”. But I wonder if giving up your ownership of files to Google is really free. Perhaps it does pay to read the fine print.

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