"Long, complicated and lawyerly—that's what most people think about privacy policies, and for good reason," Mike Yang, associate general counsel at Google, wrote in a blog post. "So we're simplifying and updating Google's privacy policies."
Google will make two different types of changes. First, it will delete 12 product-specific policies that the company finds repetitive.
Google also plans to cut out some of the more redundant language and make the phrasing more user-friendly. "For example, we're deleting a sentence that reads: 'The affiliated sites through which our services are offered may have different privacy practices and we encourage you to read their privacy policies,' since it seems obvious that sites not owned by Google might have their own privacy policies," Yang said.
Google will also add more content to some of its help centers so users can more easily find privacy-related information. It will also add a new privacy tools pageGoogle Privacy Center so that "our most popular privacy tools are now all in one place," he said.
Google has a preview of the updated version online now; it will replace the existing version on Oct. 3.
"Our updated privacy policies still might not be your top choice for beach reading (I am, after all, still a lawyer), but hopefully you'll find the improvements to be a step in the right direction," Yang concluded.
Also on Friday, Google settled a class-action case regarding its Buzz social-networking feature. The company will hand over $8.5 million, which - after covering attorneys fees and expenses - will be donated to Internet privacy and education groups.