Microsoft goes after Google by supporting Massachusetts privacy bill

Microsoft's Scroogled campaign against Google is moving (sort of) into public schools

Microsoft is fighting Google and its privacy policies beyond its well-documented "Scroogled" online and TV ad campaign. Now there's word that Microsoft is supporting a proposed law in the Massachusetts state legislature that, if passed, could restrict how Google and other companies use data from generated by software in public schools.

The report from the Wall Street Journal claims that the bill, which was first introduced in January, is designed to keep companies who provide cloud-based services to public schools from using the information generated by students for any commercial purposes. Microsoft is an official supporter of the bill and a representative says its own web-based email it provides for students does not have any ads.

Google has a suite of software aimed at schools, Google Apps for Education, which include a version of Gmail. However, a Google representative says that the normal feature of Gmail looking at email keywords to generate ads is turned off by default in the version used in public schools.

Microsoft has slammed Google for a while about Gmail's practices and a spokesperson for the company implied that Google wasn't being completely open about how it uses data it receives from public schools. The spokesperson stated, "Just because ads are not being displayed to students, it doesn't mean something else isn't being done with the data."

Source: Wall Street Journal | Image via Microsoft

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