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  • Ads in commercial software

    I'd like to get some opinions. I recently installed a commercial software app (not shareware) that periodically (a couple of times a week or more) will pop up a window within its workspace promoting other things to buy from that same vendor. It's not big, probably only about 10% of the workspace, and it disappears on its own after a few seconds. But it bugs me a lot. I don't mind ads in freeware (they deserve some sort of revenue), particularly if you can buy a license that turns off the ads. But ads in fully paid (and not cheap) programs really tick me off.

    Am I alone? Have you experienced this? Does it bother you? Do you like it? Do you care one way or the other about it?
    Ads don't bother me.
    Ads bother me, but I'd still use the software.
    Ads bother me a lot, and I'd use the software less, or buy an alternative.
    I like ads. They provide valuable information.
    Learn by teaching
    Take responsibility for learning

  • #2
    You missed out "Do adds bother you so much you'd uninstall it", I'd definitely put my mark against that.

    I'm infuriated by adds, I go to great lengths to ensure I don't have any on my PC, and I would most definitely not install anything on my machine that had them.

    If I want a product, I will go out and find it. I fairly glow with rage at the constant barrage of adds we are hit with nowadays. From unsolicited phone calls, junk post, spam, and all the other ways that advertisers try to get us to look at their worthless products.

    Sorry rant over. Put me down as Ads bother me a lot.

    PS. I have my name on all the opt out lists for phone sales and junk post, and still get hit with a deluge of it on a daily basis. If they ever make it a death penalty to send it, and they're looking for a hangman to carry out the sentence, look no further, I'm your man.
    Last edited by Gary Richardson; 06-22-2005, 04:18 AM.


    • #3
      I'm with both of you on the extreme dislike of ads, especially in commercial software. As said, freeware or shareware I can deal with while I'm trying it out but then I expect the adds to be gone if I buy or pay for a license.

      In the past when commercial software has come with ads I have run a spyware/adware program targeting the offending title and on occasions I have been able to remove the ads and the timers that pop them up without detriment to the program. No doubt this is in violation of the copyright notices and terms of use affixed to the software, but then not telling the buyer that this is adware, while no illegal (not yet, though there are regulations covering what the buyer can reasonable expect to be informed about in relation to any purchase) is lacking a degree of business ethics, I my opinion, anyway.

      It make me wonder, sometimes, exactly what is installed on my computer and what it does, who it reports to, what information is actually sent, etc.

      Fortunately, there are new laws in the process here in Australia that will require software makers to fully disclose what is installed on a system and also that everything that was installed, no matter what, be fully removed upon uninstalling the software.

      There are pros and cons to this, especially if the software is purchased overseas, but if you can buy it in Australia software makers must comply.

      Sorry I have strayed somewhat from the topic...




      • #4

        I think you should name this App - it may cut their sales if people know about it.



        • #5
          I'd prefer to keep this generalized. If I name it, other factors might come into play.
          Learn by teaching
          Take responsibility for learning


          • #6
            Originally posted by Gary Richardson
            You missed out "Do adds bother you so much you'd uninstall it", I'd definitely put my mark against that.
            ... Sorry rant over. Put me down as Ads bother me a lot.
            PS. I have my name on all the opt out lists for phone sales and junk post, and still get hit with a deluge of it on a daily basis. If they ever make it a death penalty to send it, and they're looking for a hangman to carry out the sentence, look no further, I'm your man.
            Hi all !
            I join in the utter dislike of having Ads included in software purchased in good faith.! and you may add me as assistant hangman to Gary.

            Gary: You should not reply to the opt out options in spam or junk mail, your response only validates your address to the spammers so they know your e-mail address works and can be added to more of the lists they sell. Besides they never respect your wish to be removed from those lists.

            Regards to all - Martha


            • #7

              Thanks for your concern, but you mis-understood my post. I most definitely do NOT reply to spam, or click on links requesting to be removed from mailing lists.

              Here in the UK, we have a series of official bodies, to whom you can apply, to have your name added to a list of people who don't want junk mail, junk phone calls etc. They're known as Telephone Preference Service, Mailing Preference Service etc.

              I have my names on these lists, and theoretically, advertisers are not supposed to contact people whose names are on that list. It is supposed to be an offence for them to do so. However, despite the fact that it has undoubtedly reduced the amount of such mail, and such calls, that I receive, it has by no means eliminated them.

              As I said, I go to some pains to see that I'm contacted ONLY by those I wish to communicate with.

              As for Spam, my ISP has some quite good Spam filters. I also have more than one e-mail address, one given to friends and family, one given to trusted sites such as here, one given on other sites (this is discarded and another opened when the spam gets too heavy).


              • #8
                Blushing , jeje

                Sorry Gary, should have guessed that you were likely to know that, but if you are an art specialist I thought maybe that was not quite clear. Over concerned and protective I guess ?

                Regards - Martha


                • #9
                  Not at all, I appreciate your concern, and the well meant advice.


                  • #10
                    Over the years I've noticed the presence of splash screens has diminished perhaps this internal advertising has replaced it. Can the style of ad you mention be 'live' Doug i.e. can be updated by the vendors server while you are online? Of course any firewall could disable the latter.


                    • #11
                      As far as I am concerned, ads have no place on my computer. I never install anything that has them, even before I install shareware or freeware to try them I read over the user agreement and terms to be sure what is being installed, and I back that up by using a directory/file tracker to keep track of every system change made, so I can pull it back out and everything related to it if necessary.

                      And in commercial software, that's just low.


                      • #12

                        What directory/file tracker do you use?


                        • #13
                          We live in a world bombarded by ads. For me, they're just another source of stress.


                          • #14
                            ah, the joys of advertising and advertisers...

                            sometimes i'd rather have a virus than all the ad garbage going on. planting ads in commercial paid for software tells me instantly what type of company/person i'm dealing with.... covert. thus, their software is INSTANTLY suspect. i've tossed several over the years, including a couple of isps.

                            there are ways to combat this barrage. in email, you can do like gary does and have at least one 'junk mail' address. i have one and it is ALWAYS full. it's always full because i never open it. so, the mail sent to it gets returned or lost or just plain dies somewhere. and like gary i use this for general registrations on sites that require it. it's a valid address, but when they put me on their lists they simply get no response. the address i use for friends and family never gets listed except on trusted sites or with trusted people and i NEVER put it in a 'profile' of any kind.

                            you can also learn email filtering. a good place to start for that is . that guy is an expert on filtering junk mail.

                            for junk phone calls i have another piece of software. since i have a dsl line and a 56k modem line, this software answers the phone for me. it announces who is calling and their phone number. it will also block any number i want it to and the line simply gets hung up. i also have a digital answering machine that i leave on 'screen'. and, i have caller id. between the three of these i can screen all calls and only pick up the ones i want. the phone software even displays the name and number in big letters on my monitor for me. oh, the name of this is 'phonetray free' and can be found at . great little piece of software!

                            popups and ads in software can be a bit more tricky. sadly, Norton even took to this not too long ago. and some may not even recognize this as 'advertising'. but if you get popups telling you it's time to re-register or update your software, that IS advertising. norton has this annoying little thing that pops up when the year is over that you cant remove and it just keeps popping up every 14 or 15 days. you cant answer 'i dont want to register....ever!'. you have the option of being reminded in 1 day or 14 and then it comes up again at the end of whatever you clicked on. now, i dont mind this too much in anti-virus software, but i am annoyed that i cant remove it.

                            for spyware, scumware, malware, or whatever you wish to call it, there are 3 that i would recommend; adaware, spybot search and destroy, and microsoft's new beta one. i dont have the latter, but the reports say it's pretty good.

                            for hijacks, get 'hijackthis'.

                            and for removing software once you've installed it and it's got 'features' you dont like, try 'norton clean sweep' and 'total uninstall'. these monitor and record EVERYTHING that gets installed on a new piece of software and where it gets installed. this is important. uninstallers that come with the software are notorious for leaving things behind that dont get uninstalled. after a while you've got a clogged registry and abandoned files all over. clean sweep or total uninstall remove EVERYTHING that that program installed anywhere, including the stuff in the registry that it put there.

                            MAKE AND USE RESTORE POINTS! windows xp has a thing called restore points. it's basically sort of a snapshot of what's on your computer at the time you make a restore point. if your machine gets all messed up you can go back to this restore point and restore your machine to those settings and no more messed up computer!

                            and last on my list is scotty the wonder dog! yeah, it's a watchdog. this one has saved me many hassles! Winpatrol. winpatrol is a nice, quiet little app that sits in your systray and watches for oddball things. it tracks cookies that folks try to put on your machine, most of which are harmless, but sometimes annoying. but it's real power is in catching 'riders' and other instant, covert installs. riders, or piggybacks, are programs that are part of a download or install that you want. only, you get more than you actually think you're getting. another program is appended or 'piggybacked' onto the one you want and it gets installed along with the other, usually unbeknownst to you. WinPatrol catches these and gives you a popup asking if you really want it installed. so this one also always stays on my active list.

                            so, stay on your toes and fight back!



                            • #15
                              Just a quick warning on a current undesirable trend.

                              Sony have started installing a Rootkit on your computer if you use any of their copyright protected CDs.

                              A Rootkit is a device used by Hackers to hide files by corrupting processes at the deepest levels of your computer. They cannot be detected by Anti-Virus or Anti-Spyware programmes, as they have infected your computer in such a way as to cause your computer to "lie" to all requests for information that might identify the hidden processes.

                              The Rootkit that Sony have propogated although not "Malicious" in itself, does pose a risk to your computer. Firstly it uses up your processor cyles, therefore slowing your machine. Secondly it has been known to cause conflicts (it regularly crashes Microsofts proposed new OS Vista), lastly it leaves a vulnerability whereby Malicious interlopers can hide files on your system merely by adding $sys$ in front of any file they want to hide.

                              Sony have produced a patch which will reveal these hidden processes, but you have to apply to them to get the proceses removed. If you try to remove them yourself it will screw your CD drive.

                              Once removed, you will no longer be able to play Copyright Protected CDs on your Computer. Needless to say, Sony will not re-imburse you for your now useless CD purchase.

                              Please note, there is no EULA (End User Licence Agreement) to notify you of this install, merely by playing a Sony Copyright Protected CD will you infect your system.

                              My advice is to boycott all CDs from Sony with this "Protection", until they see reason and remove it from their product.



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