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Re: chromebooks

From: Óscar
Subject: Re: chromebooks
Date: Mon, 9 Nov 2020 18:44:34 +0100

Hola Crista.

Thank you for your inputs.

2020-11-08 10:58 GMT+01:00, lily <>:
> Hola óscar,
> In my experience of working with children, I have found that Google already
> has had an incredible impact.
> Before COVID-19 I was a regular volunteer with an organization that gives
> free laptops running the GNU+Linux operating system. I taught children about
> the importance of computer user freedom, that GNU means FREEDOM, and I
> taught children how to use free software like LibreOffice, GIMP, VLC,
> Blender, and others for school work. (I showed the Free Software 30 years
> video, and the video talk by Richard Stallman Free Software and Education)
> Sadly, I found that children as young 5 years old knew the Google Chrome
> icon, and felt that unless they had it they could not connect to the
> internet. I showed them that the internet is accessed through a web browser,
> and that FireFox is a web browser that respects their freedoms. Most
> children felt uncomfortable using FireFox despite this.

In fact, I think that (in Chromebooks) Google Search itself is
integrated into the desktop, motivating the intuitive use of all the
Suite and discouraging the use of alternative tools.

> Google is taking advantage of the pandemic to sneak their way into the
> classroom and collect academic information as well as very personal
> information about the most vulnerable population in our society, our
> CHILDREN. This should be alarming to everyone! This is not only wrong ,but
> in the United States I believe this is a violation of the Family Educational
> Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). (Legal experts should comment on this.)
> I am not a parent, but if I were a parent, I would never let Google touch my
> daughter. I would equip her with the knowledge of Free Software and help her
> build her own computer that she would understand inside and out.
> I know these are difficult times, but there are used laptops available for
> affordable prices, and there are resources to learn how to install GNU+Linux
> operating systems on them. Parents should take advantage of this and say NO
> to schools demanding that they use software and hardware that violates the
> privacy of their children and undermines their education by stripping them
> of not only software knowledge but hardware knowledge.

The main problem is that we live in an anesthetized society. In the
family environment that I know, I do not detect any concern about
these issues. Google seems like a great tool to them, and they take it
for granted that nothing can be done about it anyway. However, I am
trying to give shape to the arguments to try to convince the most
sensitive people in the school family association. Unfortunately,
COVID-19 is not making it easy to get together. Rather, it acts in a
demotivating way.

On the other hand, I am learning about the possibility of bypassing
the Chromebook, perhaps installing GNU / Linux to function in a dual
way. But i'm not an expert. Rather the opposite ;-)

> Please let me know if this was helpful. Happy to provide links to
> resources.
> Crista Moreno
> ‐‐‐‐‐‐‐ Original Message ‐‐‐‐‐‐‐
> On Friday, November 6, 2020 3:00 AM, Óscar <> wrote:
>> Hi. Here a newbie!
>> This is a inquiry about Chromebooks to the community.
>> Recently, the public school that my 9-year-old daughter attends has
>> imposed on us the acquisition of a certain Chromebook.
>> I have not found any articles or conversations about it, but I am
>> first concerned about the landing of the Google empire in public
>> schools with the support of public institutions. In this case, it is
>> an uncritical acceptance of the entire Google system, including the
>> teachers. They celebrate all the comforts the integrated package
>> offers. The use of free software does not even cross their minds.
>> Second, I am concerned about the tracking and acquisition of data and
>> metadata about the content that my daughter accesses throughout her
>> educational stage. Information that, I suppose, will be recorded on
>> some distant server and from which their knowledge, character,
>> mistakes, tastes and preferences, etc. can be inferred, thus creating
>> a very personal, precise and intimate profile from such an early age.
>> Maybe in the future the guys at Google will "not be evil.". But what
>> if they will be?
>> My questions to the community are: what do you think about it? Do you
>> think there is a compromised exposure of minors in their educational
>> stage? What sinister scenarios can you think of based on this data
>> collection? Do you know any specific case of abuse of privacy in
>> similar contexts?
>> I appreciate any constructive comments.
>> Thank you very much,
>> óscar pérez
>> libreplanet-discuss mailing list

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