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Old 07-01-2005, 03:04 AM   #9

Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
Posts: 9,507

Originally posted by RevenuePilotRep
spyware? lol
We've already had this discussion previously, and perhaps in light of the changes that Claria has put in place of late to shed its Gator/spyware image, the term 'theftware' would be more apt. For more on that term and how it relates to Claria, please note that there are 65 threads within our StopScum forum that label Gator as theftware, and that's from a forum that only contains 199 threads. They may make for an interesting read.

Certainly, Gator/Claria has changed its practices to some degree since the rebrand and since the conclusion of the NY Times lawsuit, but the company still relies on anti-competitive practices and highly controversial distribution/disclosure methods to propagate its wares. While there may be some justification in your laughing out loud in the present climate, history might dictate that Gator almost single-handedly launched the spyware industry with its earlier releases of GAIN and its practice of surepticiously installing the software on users' computers, which is no laughing matter.

Almost every anti-spyware website and spyware removal tool (including the system owned by Microsoft) references current or former releases of Gator/GAIN/Claria software as either spyware or potentially malicious adware (See this Trend Micro link for just one example). In fact, a search for "Gator and spyware" on Google yields 317,000 results, "GAIN and spyware" 801,000 results and "Claria and spyware" 64,800 results. You'd be hard pressed to find any other company or brand that is so deeply associated with the spyware scene, even if this is an inaccurate or purely psychological association.

While I'm frequently wrong, it would be hard to imagine the other 1,000,000+ websites indexed by Google that place this label on Gator to have made the same mistake.

Of course, I can understand why you may feel different if you were unfamiliar with the company during its early years. The 'new-and-improved' Claria is, after all, incredibly keen to divorce itself from the label. It's for this reason that they've posted the anti-spyware commitment link on their website and why their spokespeople gave you a positive impression of their product when you chatted with them at Ad:Tech, but there's no denying that their brand is permanently tarnished as a result of their shady past, and that Microsoft is at risk of acquiring a share of that ill-will if they decide to purchase the company.

Out of curiosity, does any of this change your opinion? If not, are you making your judgement based solely on Claria's current product suite or do you find it hilarious that any version of GAIN could be considered spyware and/or theftware? Just wondering...

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Last edited by Czar; 07-01-2005 at 03:12 AM.
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