Yet Another Company Sues Over Being Called Adware

from the yet-again dept

We’ve seen a few such cases in the past — and they usually end with a judge telling the suing company to shove off, but here we have yet another company upset that its being labeled as an adware/spyware provider. In this case, it’s a company called 7Search, which is suing McAfee. 7Search is claiming that McAfee’s warning about “downloads” from its site having been “credibly” called adware or spyware are false and defamatory because 7Search no longer offers software for download off its site (though it apparently did in the past).

As Eric Goldman notes in the link above, just bringing these types of lawsuits tends to backfire. As we noted above, they rarely, if ever, win, and simply filing the lawsuit draws much more attention to the company — often including reports from users about why they do think the software in question is adware or spyware. In the meantime, if 7Search no longer offers downloads, then it’s not clear what it’s upset about either, since it’s not like the McAfee warning is going to stop people from downloading its software — since, apparently, there’s no software to download.

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Companies: 7search, mcafee

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Comments on “Yet Another Company Sues Over Being Called Adware”

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oregonnerd (user link) says:

Downloads, spyware and speculation

If there were a means to identify users among friendly servers (something perhaps like an IP address)

If through forms, validation by IPs, cookies left on the computer (for any amount of time), a profile could be approached

It could actually be tested by continuing to track while trying to predict. At the point you can predict, you know the wants of the prospective user.

Better than all that, where (as Aasimov I think was the first to point out, although I won’t swear to it)

oh where does the morality lie?

Cleofe Betancourt (profile) says:


Just to update this post, did indeed sue McAfee Site Advisor in 2008 due to the unwillingness of the McAfee team to review our sites and update their ratings. Once McAfee reviewed our web properties they found that does not install spyware on user’s machines, and all of the 7search sites now receive “Green” ratings from Site Advisor – .

The whole “spyware” issue was raised due to 7search’s partnership with the Browser Accelerator toolbar in the late 90’s + earlier 2000’s. This was a user downloaded toolbar that tracked user behavior, similar to Alexa toolbar, and was completely opt in. This toolbar was co-developed with an outside source,however, and there were some negative issues with this source.

Browser Accelerator no longer has any relevance to the 7search product. We appreciate your concerns and welcome readers to forward any questions they may have about 7search to

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