Friday, December 09, 2005

can antispyware companies sell there service as "critics"?

over the past few years, I've read about several spyware companies suing antispyware companies for including them in their lists as spyware... the latest I read about was 180 solutions suing zone labs. I don't really know how the past trials have ended, but I was wondering....what if antispyware companies stopped defining what is and what is not spyware with absolute terms? What if they started calling themselves "critics" and simply gave their opinion? This would all be simple legalese, but would it make a difference? I mean, a movie critic can claim a movie is bad and he wont get sued...even if his criticism causes people that respect that critic to not go see the movie.
In amazon and other stores (ok, I am not 100% sure about this in amazon) you get to see "other items" bought by a person whose opinion you respect. You pretty much click a button and see the recommended stuff. Could antispyware companies avoid costly lawsuits by calling themselves critics and have people that install their software agree to a statement like "I understand that by installing this program I am giving permission to YYYY company to block my computer from installing software they believe can be harmful"? would this fly?

I know some might say that that would allow the company to suddenly decide that MS office is bad and delete it from your drive...but I doubt they would do that...market forces would make them behave even though that phrase would give them extra "powers".

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