Judge Stops Utah's Anti-Spyware Law
from the making-the-world-safe-for-spyware dept
A judge has granted an injunction against the new spyware law in Utah, in a case brought by adware company WhenU. The company claims that they support a federal anti-spyware law, but that the state law goes too far. While I’ve defended the law in the past some parts of it may be questionable — including a ban on certain software that uses context-based tools for advertising. Obviously, this is targeted at WhenU and Claria and others who pop up contextual ads, but as we’ve explained before, this should be perfectly legal if (big if) the end-user decides they want it. Unfortunately, too many people are confusing two different issues here. The first issue is how this software gets installed on a computer, and the second is what it does on that computer once installed. The real problem with spyware is that it gets installed without the user realizing it. It’s not the fact that it pops up ads. If someone wants software that pops up contextual ads (see: Gmail) that should be their choice. The problem is all about how the program gets installed.