GitLab retracts its privacy invasion policy after backlash from community

0
1205
3 min read

Yesterday, GitLab retracted its earlier decision to implement user level product usage tracking on their websites after receiving negative feedback from its users.

Two days ago, GitLab informed its users that starting from its next yet to be released version (version 12.4), there would be an addition of Javascript snippets in GitLab.com (GitLab’s SaaS offering) and GitLab’s proprietary Self-Managed packages (Starter, Premium, and Ultimate) websites. These Java snippets will be used to interact with GitLab and other third-party SaaS telemetry services.

Read More: GitLab 12.3 releases with web application firewall, keyboard shortcuts, productivity analytics, system hooks and more


GitLab.com users were specifically notified that until they accept the new service terms condition, their access to the web interface and API will be blocked. This meant that users with integration to the API will experience a brief pause of service, until the new terms are accepted by signing in to the web interface. The self-managed users, on the other hand, were apprised that they can continue to use the free software GitLab Core without any changes.

The DevOps coding platform says that SaaS telemetry products are important tools to understand the analytics on user behaviour inside web-based applications. According to the company, these additional user information will help in increasing their website speed and also enrich user experience.

“GitLab has a lot of features, and a lot of users, and it is time that we use telemetry to get the data we need for our product managers to improve the experience,” stated the official blog. The telemetry tools will use JavaScript snippets that will be executed in the user’s browser and will send the user information back to the telemetry service.

Read More: GitLab faces backlash from users over performance degradation issues tied to redis latency

The company had also assured users that they will disclose all the whereabouts of the user information in the privacy policy. They also ensured that the third-party telemetry service will have data protection standards equivalent to their own standard and will also aim for their SOC2 compliance.

If any user does not wish to be tracked, they can turn on the Do Not Track (DNT) mechanism in their GitLab.com or GitLab Self-Managed web browser. The DNT mechanism will not load the  the JavaScript snippet. “The only downside to this is that users may also not get the benefit of in-app messaging or guides that some third-party telemetry tools have that would require the JavaScript snippet,” added the official blog.

Following this announcement, GitLab received loads of negative feedback from users.

Although, GitLab has rolled backed the Telemetry service changes for now, and are re-considering their decision, many users are warning them to drop the idea completely.

Read Next

DevOps platform for coding, GitLab reached more than double valuation of $2.75 billion than its last funding and way ahead of its IPO in 2020

GitLab goes multicloud using Crossplane with kubectl

Are we entering the quantum computing era? Google’s Sycamore achieves ‘quantum supremacy’ while IBM refutes the claim

PostGIS 3.0.0 releases with raster support as a separate extension

Electron 7.0 releases in beta with Windows on Arm 64 bit, faster IPC methods, nativetheme API and more