Why Not Google? ➝

Marco Arment:

I didn’t set out to aggressively quit Google-everything, but once I changed my browsers’ default search engine to DuckDuckGo, that has mostly happened. The most surprising part was how easy it was for Google to mostly fall out of my life, how quickly it happened, and how little I missed it.

I too have slowly dropped Google services from my life. At this point, Gmail and YouTube are the only two Google products I continue to use. Gmail, because I have a decade-old email address that I’m not quite ready to give up on and YouTube because it’s the video service where all of the content is.

But unlike Marco, I have made a conscious effort to remove Google from my life. When they turned their back on Google Reader users by shutting down the service I realized that I should never rely so heavily on products that I don’t pay for. Because if you’re not paying for the product, you are the product.

That’s why I’ve been using Mint for several years, DuckDuckGo for several months, and have been slowly transitioning from Gmail to having my email hosted on a Media Temple virtual server. And, the changes have been going smoothly — I haven’t found myself missing Google’s equivalents at all.