Companies involved in the "adware" space have been very careful to avoid the spyware label, sometimes even threatening to sue anyone who calls them spyware. However, now that Computer Associates has named Kazaa the biggest spyware threat, thanks to all its adware, Broadband Reports is noting that marketers are fighting back, arguing that there's nothing wrong with adware. In fact, they're comparing typical adware to being as bad as tracking cookies. The main difference, of course, is that too many adware products are installed without the end-user knowing or understanding what they're installing, after which they're constantly bugged with pop-ups and a slower machine, with no easy way to undo the damage. There is absolutely nothing wrong with adware in a situation where the user knows what he or she is getting and still agrees to it. The problem is that, if the end-user knew what he or she was getting, most wouldn't bother to install the adware in the first place. As Broadband Reports says: "Users meanwhile don't care what it's called, they simply want it gone." Marketers are deluding themselves if they think that adware is an effective means of reaching their target audience. Annoying your potential customers may work initially for a few, but it's bad for business in the long run.
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