Google: New Nav Bar is For Your Privacy

The new navigation bar, which we reported on earlier this month, is more about managing your identity and privacy online than integrating social or tracking you, according to Google. Google has been "thinking about" and identifying different ways people identify themselves online.


The new navigation bar is meant help people better identify how they are identified while using Google services and provide better transparency for those using multiple Google accounts.

Google has classified users into three categories: unidentified, pseudonymous and completely identified.

People without Google accounts, or signed-out on are, obviously, unidentified.

Conversely, those who are signed in are either pseudonymous or identified to Google. In classifying people as pseudonymous, Google has officially recognized that people use their services with false or incomplete identities and claimed that everyone has the right to do so.

Citing security, specifically with regards to recent events in Africa and the Middle East, Google acknowledged Internet users -- despite needing to use an account to use Google services -- also have the right to privacy.


Because many people have their personal Google account that they use for primary e-mail and other services like Google Checkout, but may also have the need to post blogs, photos or videos without personally identifying themselves. The toolbar, they claim, is to help users better recognize which account they are signed into.

About the author

A seasoned Web developer since 1993, Thom is a technical SEO and digital analytics veteran. Thom started his first Web consultancy, New York Web Works, in 1997 and never looked back. His current role as Director of Analytics at Acronym puts him on the forefront of analyzing websites of some of the biggest brands.

Part of the ClickZ Academy faculty, Thom has also taught for several well-respected colleges and universities. A ghost author of over a dozen technical training manuals, Thom has written for several industry blogs. He is a regular speaker at ClickZ Live events and is also a veteran of TEDx.