Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    Platinum Lounger
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
    Posts
    5,016
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Ignorance is bliss

    Much food for thought in this article. It seems there are still a lot of people prepared to trust the purveyors of malware to do the right thing by them. It seems too that the Marketscore miscreants have actually convinced themselves that it's not spying if the user is told about it; therefore their junk is not spyware. Sort of reminds me of the mafia rubbing someone out, and dismissing it as "But that was business."

    Alan

  2. #2
    Uranium Lounger
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    6,684
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts

    Re: Ignorance is bliss

    Great article Alan !!! It never ceases to amaze me what people will accept in order to get something <img src=/S/free.gif border=0 alt=free width=30 height=15> !!!!! <img src=/S/disappointed.gif border=0 alt=disappointed width=15 height=15>
    <IMG SRC=http://www.wopr.com/w3tuserpics/DocWatson_sig.gif>

  3. #3
    4 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Bellevue, Nebraska, USA
    Posts
    569
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Re: Ignorance is bliss

    Obviously, more education is needed - but I fear that is not enough - we need tougher laws with enforcement teeth to protect the ignorant.
    Bill (AFE7Ret)
    Freedom is NOT Free!
    Heat is the bane of all electronics!

    ─────────────────────

  4. #4
    Uranium Lounger
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    6,684
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts

    Re: Ignorance is bliss

    Caveat emptor !!! If their ignorance didn't directly impact the rest of us using the internet, by perpetuating and spreading all the junk around, I'd happily let them twist in the wind for being so self absorbed not to care. But since you can't legislate "human nature" you have to criminalize the behaviour of those who take advantage of the ignorant !! Not that their behaviour isn't criminal already !!! <img src=/S/hmmn.gif border=0 alt=hmmn width=15 height=15>
    <IMG SRC=http://www.wopr.com/w3tuserpics/DocWatson_sig.gif>

  5. #5
    4 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Bellevue, Nebraska, USA
    Posts
    569
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Re: Ignorance is bliss

    Buyer beware indeed - but the irony is that it is "free" - in the beginning anyway - that is until your identity is stolen and your bank accounts are emptied and/or your credit is ruined when you don't pay the credit cards that are in your name that someone else obtained and used with your identity!
    Bill (AFE7Ret)
    Freedom is NOT Free!
    Heat is the bane of all electronics!

    ─────────────────────

  6. #6
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Silicon Valley, USA
    Posts
    23,112
    Thanks
    5
    Thanked 93 Times in 89 Posts

    Re: Ignorance is bliss

    I think the analogy to organized crime is wrong. In the U.S., we are very accustomed to giving up "marketing information" to get something "free"; the pursuit of "free" is almost our national religion. (Hence, the origins of our "Software Finds & Wants" board!) It is unusual that we outlaw any such exchange of data (but we sometimes do tell the collector what it can and cannot do with the information).

    The user who said that MarketScore doesn't have time to read his e-mail reminds me of what I said about the FBI's Carnivore system, but I wonder if most people would feel the same way if the party collecting the information were the FBI?

  7. #7
    Uranium Lounger
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    6,684
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts

    Re: Ignorance is bliss

    Alan began this thread with the line "Much food for thought in this article". While the subject matter may be food for thought, we all have to realize that there's "no free lunch" !!! Everything has it's price. Be it money, loss of security or privacy, whatever.......... there's a price. The price is determined by our willingness to pay. If we do nothing, we deserve what we get !!
    <IMG SRC=http://www.wopr.com/w3tuserpics/DocWatson_sig.gif>

  8. #8
    Uranium Lounger
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    6,684
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts

    Re: Ignorance is bliss

    I think I'd worry about MarketScore a little more than the FBI. While I wouldn't want any government agency looking over my shoulder or prying into my business without cause, at least the FBI has to jump through some hoops to get that information. Maybe they should just offer a <img src=/S/free.gif border=0 alt=free width=30 height=15> game or utility and simply put something in the EUA that tells you they are installing a keystroke logger on your system that will be monitored and logged through the FBI's central servers. <img src=/S/bingo.gif border=0 alt=bingo width=15 height=22>
    <IMG SRC=http://www.wopr.com/w3tuserpics/DocWatson_sig.gif>

  9. #9
    4 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Bellevue, Nebraska, USA
    Posts
    569
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Re: Ignorance is bliss

    The mofia hit may be a bit extreme but linking spyware to organized crime may not. Identity theft is big business. It may not be one of the traditional NY crime families but who knows what the Russian or Czech mobs are into. If all spyware did was monitor your surfing habits and then sent you "targeted" sales pitches for things that you may actually want to buy, then I think most people would not complain (as long as it did not bog their systems down) - that is what is considered legitimate "adware". But much of this spyware is intentionally malicious, tied to Trojans, worms, viruses, and other malware - or porn, drugs, identity theft or other illicit activities. Sure, much of the malware is written by punk-ass kids showing off their coding skills. But porn is illegal in most places. And yet it still gets out. How? Through the underground connections established by someone shady who has an ISP or some ISP admin on the "payroll" and then some government official who then looks away as that ISP dumps this stuff onto the Internet backbones.

    Not all of this is done through hijacked email accounts.

    Organized crime may not be controlling the spyware "industry" but I bet they have their hand in it. And so there needs to be regulations and laws with teeth. If a software program is going to dump spyware on your system, you should have to interactively accept it - and Opt out options should be clearly available. And EULAs (end-user license agreements) need to change to be understandable - AND accessible BEFORE installing or breaking the shrinkwrap.
    Bill (AFE7Ret)
    Freedom is NOT Free!
    Heat is the bane of all electronics!

    ─────────────────────

  10. #10
    Uranium Lounger
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    6,684
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts

    Re: Ignorance is bliss

    Crime, organized or otherwise, is a driving force behind many things in the world. Always has been !! The reasons are pretty simplistic. Power and <img src=/S/money.gif border=0 alt=money width=17 height=15>. As long as the possibility exists for someone to make a great deal of money or gain control of something they want, crime will be with us. Human Nature. Unfortunately, just as laws don't stop crime in general, they won't stop internet and computer crime. And just as with other crime we need better education, enforcement and most of all harsher penalties for those caught and a zero tolerance, full sentence judicial system. Do the crime, do the time. All of it !!!
    <IMG SRC=http://www.wopr.com/w3tuserpics/DocWatson_sig.gif>

  11. #11
    Platinum Lounger
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
    Posts
    5,016
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Re: Ignorance is bliss

    Well, the "Food for thought" bit certainly seems to have worked! <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15> But from the responses, I should probably qualify some of my own original comments, as well as add another <img src=/S/2cents.gif border=0 alt=2cents width=15 height=15> worth.

    My mafia analogy was perhaps a bit unfortunate, because it was not intended to equate the issue of "shifty" information gathering with criminal activity (another issue of its own). I was really laughing at the flimsy MarketScore defence of its product as not spying because users are being informed that they are being spied on, and therefore it can't be spyware! I saw the analogy to it not being murder because it was business. Maybe not a great analogy, but I can still see similarities in justifying/ absolving themselves in their own minds, by applying some sort of contorted logic that ends up conveniently concluding that the sky can't be blue after all.

    As far as the issue of free software, free lunches and freeware goes, alt.comp.freeware have tried to establish a working definition for genuine freeware (as opposed to the many pretenders) for several years. Here's one take on it:

    "Freeware is programming that is offered for your use at no cost, monetary or otherwise.
    You may use freeware for as long as you wish. However, it is usually copyrighted so that you can't incorporate its programming into anything you may be developing. The least restrictive examples of freeware are uncopyrighted programs in the public domain.
    Freeware is simply written by generous people whose main rewards are the satisfaction of knowing that they are both helping other people and making other people happy!
    At one time, "freeware" was a trademark of Andrew Fluegelman, the author of the well-known MS-DOS communication program PC-TALK III. The trademark wasn't enforced after his mysterious disappearance and presumed death in 1984 (how cheery!) However, the name has evolved to the current meaning above."


    This reflects the genuine, fair dinkum, no strings attached free lunch freeware, as opposed to the "everything has its price" freeware imitators. Much scumware has hijacked the freeware tag, because it was a fairly trusted descriptor in the past. Unfortunately, many people don't realize that this distinction exists either, and regard freeware as synonymous with the "free software", "free download" etc. tags that masquerade as the real free lunch. I can't find the link to the above, so have attached the rest, which attempts to distinguish the real thing from the pretenders (whether they declare their parasitic activities overtly, in the fine print or not at all).

    Just for the record, anything that I put on the lounge as <img src=/S/free.gif border=0 alt=free width=30 height=15>ware adheres (to the best of my knowledge) with the "pure" freeware definition above. A fellow crusader, Son of Spy (also an "Alan" by coincidence) goes as far as to blacklist anything he uncovers as crapware, not by removing it from his site, but by boldly branding it as such: <IMG SRC=http://www.sover.net/~wysiwygx/NoSpy.gif> and killing all his links to it.

    There is still real freeware out there; you just have to know where to look. Just ask on Software Wants and Finds and I'll try to find it for you. <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15>

    Alan

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •