Kin Lane

Demoting Gmail In My Life

I’ve been on Gmail since the early days. It’s been my primary email account for about 15 years. Today, I am demoting it. I recently ditched Google Chrome as my browser, and now I want to reduce my footprint when it comes to their email services. I have three primary emails, [email protected], [email protected], and [email protected] (go ahead and spam me, doesn’t bother me—I won’t read it). I ran the domain on Google Apps, but I ran on some company in Sweden. I am consolidating both of them with my domain registrar Hover, and using as my primary domain. I”ll be doing business on, but will be only receiving email on [email protected] After a while, I’ll just stop using Gmail altogether.

In 2019, I just do not want my personal and business world flowing through Google servers. I know they still have other ways of getting at my data, but I can work to minimize my footprint within the Google datacenter, and consolidate my email with a company I trust. I really have enjoyed Google Gmail services over the years. I was happy when they offered the Google Apps for Business, as I am happy to pay for my services. But, I’d say the damage has already been done by their approach to capturing data through their free services. My trust levels regarding Google services have be dimmed, and I will be evaluating each service I use for the usefulness of it in my world, and the overall benefits it delivers. My goal is to significantly reduce the size of my Google account, and the associated services. It isn’t easy trimming down an account like this, you have to make some hard decisions, but ultimately you’d be surprised how fast you adapt, and how minimal the overall impact on your life it all ends up being.

I do not think I can completely remove Google from my life—-it just isn’t possible. They are that ubiquitous. However, I can work to minimize my usage of their products and services. I’ve become quite dependent on some of what Google offers. Sometimes it is because it is a superior product, like Google Maps. Other times it is just through habit and convenience, like with Gmail. I like the Gmail application, and the overall service, but all of its features combined doesn’t outweigh the damage they are inflicting right now with their views of privacy and respect for the digital self. I can get comparable email services through the domain registrar I use (Hover), and not have to worry about them scanning my emails, or using the exhaust from my daily emailing to train their latest machine learning magic.

I remember when having a Gmail account was cool-—man, what a fool I was. I took the bait, hook, line and sinker. I have used [email protected] for the last 14 years, and it feels strange to put it down. Honestly, it feels good. I don’t like I am giving so much control over my digital self to a company. I prefer only using email addresses within domains I can control. I can’t migrate my [email protected] account—-it isn’t mine. This is a problem. I’m not sure why I ever thought it was a good idea to use a network email account in the first place. I’m even more confused why I continued to use it as my primary account for almost 15 years. Anyways, I’ll still be checking in on [email protected], but eventually I will stop tuning in, and if you haven’t emailed me at [email protected] or [email protected], you probably won’t get a response.