Miscellaneous

by Mike Masnick




Another Company Threatens To Sue Over Spyware Label

from the it's-all-about-image dept

It's really amazing how much time various "marketing" companies that surreptitiously have their apps installed on your computer have been spending lately trying to improve their image, if not actually improving their business practices. A year and a half ago, we noted how Claria (at the time, still called Gator) had threatened to sue sites that called their app spyware. Now, another company, iDownload is threatening an anti-spyware company for the same thing. The app calls iDownload's iSearch software spyware in the program and offers to remove it. iDownload claims this is "falsely disparaging" their product. The problem here is that the marketing companies are defining spyware in a different way than average users are. The average user defines it as "crap that I don't know how it got on my computer, and is slowing it down with marketing info, while probably collecting data on everything I do." The marketing companies take a much more... nuanced view. They consider their apps to be "adware," whereas spyware is only the more malicious variety. The problem is, users don't distinguish. All they know is they didn't ask for this software, it's slowing their computer down, and they want it off. What's most telling of course, is that the marketing companies are spending their time working on the PR aspect, and not making their products any less sneaky and underhanded in how they get installed.

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