Who Gets To Define What Spyware Is?

from the the-user? dept

One thing that's been clear for a long time is that spyware/adware companies and consumers define spyware completely differently. Most consumers seem pissed off over one main point: this stuff gets installed secretly without them realizing what it does. In the past, adware companies would say that the real problem is the "spying" and would then claim they didn't do that. They might be changing their minds a bit. We've recently been talking about how Claria's attempt to change isn't really a change at all. All they did was get rid of pop-ups. They still install secretly in too many cases and they still are doing things on the backend that make people uncomfortable. However, in yet another article talking about the Claria makeover, it's implied that this is okay because: "nobody much minds behind-the-scenes spying." This is symptomatic of the industry thinking that they get to define what does and doesn't annoy people. The latest example? 180Solutions is suing Zone Labs for giving their software a spyware designation. This is nothing new. Other companies have sued over the spyware label in the past as well. But, what it comes down to is that it should be the user's call what they do on their computer and how they define stuff. The industry doesn't get to decide what people want on their own computers, and telling anti-spyware companies that they can't point out that many people dislike these products and don't know how they were installed just makes it seem like they have more to hide. The answer isn't to sue anti-spyware companies but to stop making software that pisses off users.

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  1. identicon
    Arnie, 1 Dec 2005 @ 3:58pm

    spyware def..

    I think that "malware" is a better term for most of it. I have to maintain a lot of computers and I know first had how a lot of this stuff messes up peoples computers. And I know that a lot of it doesn't even have a decent uninstaller, since they dont want it removed anyway.

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