I keep hearing people say that they don’t see a common thread in everything that Google is doing. What does a website building application (and hosting) have to do with an online store? And what does email have to do with free wifi? I may be way off base, but the answer is pretty clear to me. It’s all about your information. They want to know where you are surfing, what you are reading in your email, what things you are purchasing. They’d like to know what brand of toilet paper you use, too, but I guess they’ll just have to settle for what they can glean off of your use of their services. So, the more offerings they provide, the more of your information they can harvest. (And, by the way, the cost of all of these “free” offerings” is worth it to Google because they are able to index more of your information about you.) The more of your information they can harvest, the better they are going to be able to target you with pertinent ads. And that’s how they make their money. Google is not a search company. Google is not an ISP. They are an advertising company that sells targeted ads to its customers. And to do that, they need to collect every piece of information about you that you let them. I don’t think this is necessarily a bad thing. Sure, if you twist it a little bit, you could make it into a great movie. But I think the risk of real privacy invasion is pretty minimal.