why hasn't some enterprising electronics engineer come up with a device that sits between the TV and the speakers that recognises when the adverts are about to start and automatically reduces the volume?
In the province of Ontario Canada, I have been refused service / asked to leave from retail and convenience stores for having my hoodie on. Mainly Staples Business Depot, Mac's Milk, and the odd mall. All of them claimed that me wearing a hoodie was a "security risk".
Once when I was being harassed by the clerk at Mac's Milk to take off my hoodie, I saw a kid walk out the front door with two Redbulls in each hand. I was too angry to bother to point it out.
In the quote you provided from Google they say "... we are significantly increasing the amount of time we spend auditing our logs to ensure those controls are effective."
Computer logs are a direct way of monitoring system users. It will tell them what information each employee accessed and when. If Google is going to "significantly" increase the time reviewing their logs employees would rarely be able to access any information without Google knowing about it.
This seems to me to make access not just limited but also monitored.
I found techdirt through another site that iGoogle had automatically put on a tab marked "technology". They had copied one of techdirt's articles, and through searching the same subject in Google I found the original article on techdirt's website. I've been reading their articles every day since.