Your data should be your data even if its in the Cloud. Yes, companies use and sell your data and that’s the contract we make when we use Internet systems and services. (You do read all those terms of service when you sign up right?) But the data is still yours. Google has one of the better methods of extracting your data from its Cloud and its called Google Takeout. You can create an archive of your data from many of Google’s products including your Contacts, YouTube, Hangouts, Google Drive, and others. Now Google is finally adding Google Calendar and Gmail to that list.
As of today you can set up Google Takeout to archive your Google Calendar today. The Gmail function will be rolling out over the next month. Keep in mind that if you’ve been using Gmail for some time and following Google’s original sales pitch that you never have to delete anything your Gmail archive could be pretty large in size.
The purpose here is two fold. If you want an offline back up of your data you can request it and have for local storage. Secondly, if you ever want to export that data to another service you have it available to do so.
If you’ve never checked out Google Takeout before click on your account picture while you’re in Gmail or Google+ or whatever Google service you’re using. Then click on View Account. In the left most column choose Download Your Data to be taken to Google Takeout.
Choose the Google services you wish to archive and then select Create Archive. Google will email you when the archive has been created so you don’t have to sit and wait.
I have a wise and dear colleague who has suggested since Google created the Google Takeout service that it one should create an archive once a year. Whether that’s your cup of tea or not is up to you. But if you have info that you think you’d like to have an archive of in your Calendar or in your Gmail, you can now do so.
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