Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
adware, defamation, lawsuits, naming, spyware

7search, mcafee

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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  1. identicon
    Michael Foord, 29 Aug 2008 @ 10:20am

    No but...

    The McAfee warning is likely to discourage people from visiting *at all* and if the problem has gone away and McAfee won't fix the warning - what do you suggest they do?

    On the face of it it would seem to be defamatory - assuming they have attempted to work with McAfee first (big assumption).

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Audie, 29 Aug 2008 @ 11:21am


    Hey, if you can't make money legitimately, sue your way to fortune.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    temporary adjustment, 29 Aug 2008 @ 11:26am


    so they get McAfee to drop the warning so people go to their site that "doesn't have anything to download" and then months later they put the download back up, spyware included free of charge of course.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    Bobbknight, 29 Aug 2008 @ 11:30am

    If It Starts

    If It starts out as a gator. it's still a gator.
    Outfits like this never become beneficent.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Yakko Warner, 29 Aug 2008 @ 12:17pm

    Thanks for the heads-up, Ms. Streisand

    *adds 7Search to list of blocked domains*

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    oregonnerd, 29 Aug 2008 @ 2:03pm

    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?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    Cabalamat, 29 Aug 2008 @ 4:26pm


    If i was McAfee I'd stop calling it adware -- and call it crapware instead.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. identicon
    Bignumone, 30 Aug 2008 @ 8:13am


    Yet another company that thinks it has the right to put things on our computers with-out permission or telling us, and thinks it has the right to look at where we are surfing.

    I don't think so!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. identicon
    jack, 8 Dec 2008 @ 5:36am


    SiteAdvisor is really worthless - they allow every idiot to write whatever he wants and "review" products that are often great products.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10. identicon
    Cleofe Betancourt, 14 Dec 2009 @ 7:09am


    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

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11. identicon
    Slim, 22 Mar 2010 @ 11:57pm

    7search can kiss my ass it wont go away trying to go to myspace turns into a prob 7search pops up & keeps me from going to sites that i wanna go i think 7search should be the ones getting sued

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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