Several of our clients have decided they no longer want to be spied upon by Google. So Scott Jordan, a very vocal member of Patty’s Pioneers, has embarked on a project to see what it takes to disentangle himself from Google. Scott hasn’t cut the cord yet, but he wants to know that he can do it.
One of the toughest challenges Scott discovered was moving himself off of Gmail. Although it’s easy enough to switch search engines, with email, you can’t just go cold turkey. You want to save the rich history of all the important emails you’ve sent and received. Scott reports that the tools that Google provides to let you export your data, including your email files, are much too clunky to do the job efficiently, particularly for someone like Scott, who has amassed a LOT of emails (300,000 emails with 16GB of data) over the years that he has been using Gmail.
How to Export Your Gmail History
In a recent blog post, entitled: How to back up your Gmail and other Google stuff for safety, economy or switching, Scott describes the threes states of mind that many Google users find themselves in:
~ Scott Jordan
Scott then describes, in useful detail, the three different approaches he tried:
1. Migrate your Gmail to another email client (Thunderbird, Outlook or Apple’s Mail.app).
2. Use a third-party migration service, like Backupify.com to handle much of the tedium for you.
3. Use a tool on your target machine (Mac or PC) to pull the emails down in the format you need. Scott extols the virtues of Golden Hill Software’s Cloudpull for backing up his Gmail on his Mac.
If you find yourself in the same frame of mind and situation as Scott, I recommend that you read the entire blog post and contact him with any questions.
What has struck me is the level of distrust that has built up around Google in recent months. People aren’t worried that Google will go out of business and lose their data. They are worried that Google has too much information about us in one easy-to-search comprehensive database. And we, having given Google the permission to store and mine all of our data, now want to revoke that permission.