Google Screenwise: Give up privacy while surfing with Chrome, get paid with Amazon GCs
If you surf the web with Google Chrome and shop from Amazon.com, the online giant’s new project may interest you—even as it provides more ammunition for critics of Google’s treatment of user data.
The new project is called Screenwise, and is available at google.com/landing/screenwisepanel/. It promises up to $25 worth of Amazon.com Gift Cards (GC) for those who participate, through “management partner” Knowledge Networks. Those who register and download the Screenwise browser extension get a $5 GC code right away. For every three months the extension remains installed, “panelists” will receive another $5 GC.
Registration for Screenwise is closed at the moment, but users users can enter their email address for notifications when the project will start. To quote the Screenwise page: “Leave us your email address and we’ll let you know when registration opens.”
Screenwise will track participants’ surfing habits closely, tracking “the sites you visit and how you use them.” Google said it hopes that what it learns “will help us improve Google products and services and make a better online experience for everyone.”
Amazon.com Gift Cards are codes that represent store credit that can be applied upon finalizing purchases from the online retailer. It can only be redeemed on the main US site, which is accessible from practically anywhere with a reliable internet connection—including the Philippines.
Filipinos based here can shop from Amazon.com and apply the GCs for a discount. They can then have their purchases shipped to a valid US address of a friend, relative, or acquaintance (before they fly back home), or through a delivery service like FRS Philippine Freight Services Inc. Having items shipped directly from Amazon.com to the Philippines requires paying expensive shipping costs.
The only problem? We tried entering our email on the Screenwise page, and were greeted with the following error message: “Oops, something went wrong. Something bad happened. Don’t worry, though. The Spreadsheets Team has been notified and we’ll get right on it.” Perhaps Screenwise will only be available in the US? Update: Email addresses are no longer being accepted, mere hours after the Screenwise page went live. “We appreciate and are overwhelmed by your interest at the moment. Please come back later for more details.”
Though no official announcement publicizing Google Screenwise is forthcoming as of this writing, the program will surely increase interest in Google Chrome. Only users who are 13 or older, use a Google Account, and use Chrome can participate in the study doubling as a giveaway.
Since it’s launch in 2008, Google Chrome has enjoyed a steady increase in market share, but has recently suffered a drop for the first time in two years. Google’s growing suite of products and services, including Chrome, have subjected the company to growing scrutiny over its tracking of user activity online, and the use of this information.
Knowledge Networks is a US-based firm that researches how people use products and services online.
This entry was posted on Thursday, February 9th, 2012 at 1:59 am and is filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.