Gator must be relieved, now that they no longer define the bottom of the barrel in marketing practices. Slashdot summarizes the Wired story:
“Following the same devious footsteps of the infamous Bonzi Buddy, Gator, and Comet Cursor “enhancements”, Xupiter now has their own self-installing toolbar for IE. There are many claims that if you leave your security preferences at their default level, it will install itself without your express permission. And once on your system, it’s gracious enough to reset your homepage to xupiter.com, forward all your searches to their search engine, download and automatically launch applications (like gambling applets), and blocks all attempts to set these back to normal. Removing it isn’t trivial either – it automatically checks for updates upon reboot, where it constantly changes the registry settings it uses, making the jobs of spyware removal programs like AdAware or Spybot Search & Destroy much harder. No word yet if it collects and forwards personal data.”
While marketers continue to sue Gator and its advertisers for usurping their advertising rights, no one wants to take on these companies for taking over our computers without fully disclosing what they’re doing.
Until then, Gator, Xupiter and others will be in a race to answer the question “How low can you go?”