Head in the Clouds

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If you use Gmail, Flickr, or Yahoo, you’re cloud computing. That’s what engineers call it when people store information on the internet. It’s a great way to free up space on your computer, but it’s not all good. The question, NPR reports, is who exactly owns that information? Lots of us do it — Yahoo boasted some 261 million active e-mail addresses in June; and its file-sharing site, Flickr, hosts about 2.5 billion photographs. But who owns them? According to Facebook’s user agreement, it has the right to do whatever it wants with your information — it can “use, copy, [and] distribute it,” the NPR report says. Even so, cloud computing isn’t going anywhere. It’s too efficient and popular, especialy among businesses. —Myles Hutto

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