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All of this could just be a post-processing-step on offline logs which any non-technical person could do.

Then you wouldn't need to imagine what else is done with the data. To imagine that your users data is exploited behind your back should not be a stretch of anyone's imagination.

Server logs are simply not powerful enough for most types of analysis, even basic analysis. Also, tools don’t exist to do the basic analysis in a meaningful way. It’s a catch 22, I’d love to see useful tools that work on server logs, but it’s not 1999 any more.

I keep repeating myself, but there is goaccess [1] which is powerful enough for most use cases. It creates a nice realtime, html report of your apache or nginx logs. It can even show you a report inside the terminal.

[1] https://goaccess.io/

That’s a nice overview for a sysadmin but doesn’t provide tools for making business decisions for non-sysadmins.

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