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Author Topic: CNET Download Installer Changes  (Read 6966 times)

Renegade

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CNET Download Installer Changes
« on: December 07, 2011, 06:28:27 PM »
Looks like CNET is in the final stages of working out the kinks:

Email from CNET to Developers
A note from Sean
________________________________________
Download.com Developer Community,

My last communication to you was shortly after we launched the Download.com Installer in late summer. At that time I asked for patience as we began work to deliver a mutually beneficial model to market.

We are on the verge of fulfilling our vision of coming to market with an installer model that delivers files faster and more efficiently to users, while enabling developers to a) opt-in to the Installer, b) influence the offers tied to their files, c) gain reporting insight into the download funnel, and d) share in the revenue generated by the installer. However, due to some press that surfaced yesterday and the potential for subsequent misinformation, I am reaching out now to address that press and to provide a progress report on the upcoming launch:

First, on the press that surfaced yesterday: a developer expressed anger and frustration about our current model and how his file was being bundled. This was a mistake on our part and we apologize to the developer and user communities for the unrest it caused. As a rule, we do not bundle open source software and in addition to taking this developers file out of the installer flow, we have gone in and re-checked all open source files in our catalog. We take feedback from our developer & user communities very seriously and take pains to both act on it and respond in a timely manner.

With that, I want to share progress made thus far: This week we will launch the alpha phase of our new installer. This alpha phase is intended to test the tech and do QA, and will roll through the next few weeks to ensure that our installer is bug free. Between this week and the end of January we will be completing the necessary engineering and administrative work to roll out our beta, which will include a small group of developers who've agreed to participate in the beta launch. Our goal is to exit beta by end of February and have the necessary systems in place to enable opt-in, influence over advertising offers (for those offers that impact your product), download funnel reporting and revenue share back to you, the developers. In the weeks/months following the full release, we will continue to iterate on the model, adding more features to the Installer and bringing greater efficiency to our own download funnel (read: increased install conversion).

The initial feedback from developers on our new model has been very positive and we are excited to bring this to the broader community as soon as possible. More communication will follow as we move into Q1, and until then, thank you for continuing to work with Download.com.

Sincerely,

-- Sean

Sean Murphy
Vice President & General Manager



I'm posting the entire email there because it's only sent to the developer community.

Anyways, looks like they're shifting into the right direction.

People screamed. They listened. Too bad government didn't work that way. :P




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40hz

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2011, 08:21:31 PM »
Sounds good except for the "generally" qualification as applied to open software. CNet shouldn't be bundling GPL open software at all since it violates the spirit and intent of the GPL - even if it may not 'technically' (debatable btw) violate the letter of the license.

For everything else, it should be the developer's exclusive call - and now it does look like CNet is finally starting to get it.

40hz remains hopeful this will eventually resolve itself to be a win-win for all parties involved.  :Thmbsup:

mouser

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #2 on: December 08, 2011, 09:34:18 AM »
That does indeed sound like they are going in the right direction.. "a)developer opt-in, and d)developer revenue sharing".. just the things we were saying they would need to do to make this acceptable.

Looks like we have yet another confirmation on the importance of taking a stand and protesting vigorously when some company does wrong and tries to get away with bad behavior -- bad press is a strong motivator.

IainB

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2011, 02:02:08 PM »
Forgive me if I slip into communications analysis mode for a brief moment.

It might sound like they are going in the right direction, but the email seems to ooze corporate doublespeak/BS - which, when you think about it, is probably only natural, considering that they have to try and make a profit.

For example:
Spoiler
  • "...a mutually beneficial model to market." - BS. the only beneficiary they would have in mind would probably be CNET.
  • "fulfilling our vision of coming to market with an installer model that..." - BS/buzzword. "Having a vision" excuses any behaviour. Hitler had a "vision" for the Aryan race. This was probably a hallucination of overflowing coffers.
  • "I am reaching out now to address that press..." - major BS/buzzword.
  • "This was a mistake on our part and we apologize..." - BS. "Oops. You caught us at it..."
  • "We take feedback from our developer & user communities very seriously" - BS. Yeah, right. So that is why they have been persisting with this approach for so long.
  • "I want to share progress made thus far:" - major BS/buzzword. "Look, what we have really been doing is making progress - and progress sounds good, right?"
  • "...we are excited to bring this to the broader community as soon as possible" - major BS. "Excited" my #ss.
  • "...thank you for continuing to work with Download.com." - BS. Arrogantly and immaturely flipping the bird in the closing sentence. "But hey, we're going to do this whether you like it or not, buddy, so suck on that."


Whoever wrote this rubbish had probably only gone through Marketing Communications 101 at most, by the looks of things. By the same token, they probably hadn't done Damage Control 301.

If this is the case, then the incredibly annoying behaviour of CNET over the past few months looks like it could well have been a deliberate and cynical test marketing exercise to see just exactly how far they could push things past the limits before the developers and users got really pissed off. The fact that this email was apparently to developers shows that they appreciate only too well their (CNET's) dependence on developers in the supply chain. Without the developers' co-operation, CNET would probably be dead in the water.
The objective of the test marketing? Always clearly in sight - max profits. Nothing else matters when you are financially on the ropes and being threatened with redundancy if you don't change things.

The thing about test marketing is that it is a tried-and-tested approach to test a new product/service out on a small, isolated control group and iron out the wrinkles first, before you expose the whole market to your new product/service. This is very difficult to do for a web-based service delivery system, where the reality is that you have to create the test market by a limited invite to people to try something out. Google appreciate this and get it exactly right. They gather a "by invitation only" test group and say "This is a Beta product and may be for quite a long time, so please help us to make it better and get it right before we launch it." After the limited test, they then open up the service to the whole market, but still launch it as a Beta service. For example, look how many years Gmail was in ß.

The CNET approach would seem to have been almost the exact opposite of that. This was a dumb thing to do, and for that and their arrogance they would be deserving of our scorn - and the consequences. This is probably just another corporate gaff like the Paypal/Regretsy fiasco, which has now blown up in PayPal's face as "NOWAYPAL" and with a potential consequence being the significant erosion of their market niche position. This sort of thing is sometimes referred to as "shooting oneself in the foot".
« Last Edit: December 08, 2011, 02:24:25 PM by IainB »

mahesh2k

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #4 on: December 08, 2011, 02:25:07 PM »
Revenue sharing, so they're going with opencandy model ?

IainB

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #5 on: December 08, 2011, 05:23:16 PM »
Revenue sharing, so they're going with opencandy model ?
Yes, that's exactly what it seems to be stacking up to be, in one form or another. It's a parasitic model, and so it makes great commercial/business sense.
Of course, this would probably be done regardless of what the developers might actually think about the ethics of such a practice, and to shut any naysayers up they "share" the revenue (give them some of the loot).
Money can often hush the noisiest of mouths.

The plan was probably for a fait accompli, but the bad press botched that idea.
Which is probably why you haven't been given a glimmer of an idea about all these "mutually beneficial" plans before - i.e., until the bad press had to be mitigated.

Renegade

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2011, 12:31:35 AM »
Revenue sharing, so they're going with opencandy model ?
Yes, that's exactly what it seems to be stacking up to be, in one form or another. It's a parasitic model, and so it makes great commercial/business sense.
Of course, this would probably be done regardless of what the developers might actually think about the ethics of such a practice, and to shut any naysayers up they "share" the revenue (give them some of the loot).
Money can often hush the noisiest of mouths.

The plan was probably for a fait accompli, but the bad press botched that idea.
Which is probably why you haven't been given a glimmer of an idea about all these "mutually beneficial" plans before - i.e., until the bad press had to be mitigated.


Well, I'd say that the previous model without developer consent was parasitic, but here, I'm not so sure about that.

We all know where I stand on OpenCandy. I think it's a good idea. I went to lengths to illustrate what was going on inside of an OC powered installer here:

http://cynic.me/2011...pening-up-opencandy/

The short version is that OC asks the server to give it an offer for something that is not on your computer then displays that in the installer. No information is sent to the server. You can verify this with WireShark.

My current thoughts on CNET and begruding opportunities for developers to make a living:

http://cynic.me/2011...in-win-win-scenario/

The short version is that it looks like a win-win-win-win scenario to me.

Quote
  • Developers win because they get paid.
  • Users win because they get good software.
  • CNET wins because they have a business model that is profitable and that helps people.
  • CNET advertisers win because they get access to end users and can present them with an offer.

It also seems mean spirited to begrudge developers an honest opportunity to make a living just because it's not the same method that everyone else uses.

I know that my views are extremely unpopular with some. There's not much I can do about it. This is one of those areas where some of us have strong opinions and disagree.

I also know that my opinons on some related topics are considered extreme by some. e.g. I'm all for legalising prostitution because it's not going to go away, and it's better to have it run in an honest business fashion than to push it into the underworld where nothing good can come of it. I don't think that any of us have any right to throw stones at prostitutes for what they do.

By the same token, I don't think any of us have any right to throw stones at anyone for making an honest living.

If what you're doing genuinely isn't hurting anyone, and what you're doing really is helpful, then hey, all the more power to you.

CNET screwed up. People screamed. They're fixing it. It looks like they're going a very similar route to OpenCandy with things being voluntary, open, and ethical.

Nobody is getting hurt here.

Now, when it comes to how CNET will be carving up the pie, I certainly hope that they will be fair to developers. They could give developers crumbs (which I would agree is parasitic), or they could give developers a fair slice of the pie. I don't know what that is. We'll see. I rather doubt that they'll divulge that information, but it would be fantastic if they did. Transparency is a good thing.

Anyways. Just my $0.02. Feel free to rip on me for anything. I'm thick-skinned enough and can take it~! ;D :P




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IainB

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2011, 04:20:50 AM »
@Renegade: Ah, thanks for all the notes and the links. I am better-informed now. I think I understand what you are saying:
Quote
  • It is the OpenCandy model.
  • It is not a parasitic model, if it is used in the way that CNET are apparently now suggesting they use it for genuine revenue-sharing.
  • As such, it does make commercial/business sense and is a 4 x win approach (all players stand to benefit - Developer, 3rd party developer advertiser, CNET (distributor), User) through the incentive mechanism of revenue-sharing.
  • The proportionate revenue shares are not yet defined, due to a current lack of transparency by CNET, who will be collecting the revenue and determining the shares.
  • Developers will have to trust CNET to be fair with the revenue-sharing.
  • Some developers abhor the OpenCandy model and feel very strongly that it is wrong/unethical, others (such as yourself, for example) feel very strongly that it could be a workable, fair and decent approach to revenue-sharing.
  • CNET had made a mistake in the way they initially started to implement this idea, but they now seem to have adopted a more "sensible" approach.

Is that about right?

Seems reasonable to me, except that I wouldn't trust CNET further than I could throw them, after their antics that led up to their well-earned dissing by the the press and others, and their subsequent slimeball BS email to developers. But hey, that's just my opinion.

A coincidence: I was reading some of Aesop's fables to my daughter last night. One of them was about a court held to determine the true ownership of a honeycomb that the bees claimed was theirs (and that they had made it) and the drones, who claimed likewise.
(The bees had made it and the drones were just lying about having made it.)
The presiding judge was a wasp, who said he couldn't tell whose it was and suggested that the bees go off and build a honeycomb and the drones do likewise, and then he (the judge) would compare the manner of construction of the new honeycombs with the disputed comb, and whichever of the new combs was most like the disputed comb would determine its maker as the rightful owner.

The bees happily agreed to do this, but the drones said they couldn't be bothered (because they actually couldn't make a honeycomb), so the judge decided in favour of the bees by default with the words: "It is clear now who made the comb, and who cannot make it; the court gives judgement in favour of the bees."

MORAL: We may know a tree by its fruit.
« Last Edit: December 09, 2011, 04:25:55 AM by IainB »

Renegade

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2011, 05:28:12 AM »
@Renegade: Ah, thanks for all the notes and the links. I am better-informed now. I think I understand what you are saying:
Quote
  • It is the OpenCandy model.
  • It is not a parasitic model, if it is used in the way that CNET are apparently now suggesting they use it for genuine revenue-sharing.
  • As such, it does make commercial/business sense and is a 4 x win approach (all players stand to benefit - Developer, 3rd party developer advertiser, CNET (distributor), User) through the incentive mechanism of revenue-sharing.
  • The proportionate revenue shares are not yet defined, due to a current lack of transparency by CNET, who will be collecting the revenue and determining the shares.
  • Developers will have to trust CNET to be fair with the revenue-sharing.
  • Some developers abhor the OpenCandy model and feel very strongly that it is wrong/unethical, others (such as yourself, for example) feel very strongly that it could be a workable, fair and decent approach to revenue-sharing.
  • CNET had made a mistake in the way they initially started to implement this idea, but they now seem to have adopted a more "sensible" approach.

Is that about right?

Seems reasonable to me, except that I wouldn't trust CNET further than I could throw them, after their antics that led up to their well-earned dissing by the the press and others, and their subsequent slimeball BS email to developers. But hey, that's just my opinion.


Almost perfect.

I wouldn't say that the models are the same between OC and CNET, though really, there's not much of a difference. The differences are mostly technical. Now, I don't know the inner workings of the CNET stuff there, and haven't analyzed it, so I can only say that as far as I can see there is no important non-technical difference.

Now, if someone wants to get nit-picky about things, then sure, I'd be willing to point out differences that are important for nit-picky purposes... I just don't see that as very much of a valuable discussion though.


For your distrust, I can't say as I'd blame you.

I like to believe in forgiveness and redemption though. They've come clean and have revised things, so I think I can find it in my heart to forgive. I think they want to work with the developer community, so I'll give them the benefit of the doubt. For now.

For the revenue sharing... I really don't know what it will be. I hope that they do share with fairness in mind/heart.

Dunno... Just going to cross my fingers and hope for the best. I suppose that's about all I can do.


A coincidence: I was reading some of Aesop's fables to my daughter last night. One of them was about a court held to determine the true ownership of a honeycomb that the bees claimed was theirs (and that they had made it) and the drones, who claimed likewise.
(The bees had made it and the drones were just lying about having made it.)
The presiding judge was a wasp, who said he couldn't tell whose it was and suggested that the bees go off and build a honeycomb and the drones do likewise, and then he (the judge) would compare the manner of construction of the new honeycombs with the disputed comb, and whichever of the new combs was most like the disputed comb would determine its maker as the rightful owner.

The bees happily agreed to do this, but the drones said they couldn't be bothered (because they actually couldn't make a honeycomb), so the judge decided in favour of the bees by default with the words: "It is clear now who made the comb, and who cannot make it; the court gives judgement in favour of the bees."

MORAL: We may know a tree by its fruit.

I love Aesop!

If you ever have a chance, get or read "Aesop Without Morals" (Daly, Lloyd W. Aesop Without Morals. New York: Thomas Yoseloff, 1961). It's an EXCELLENT read!

Also, "The Lives of Eminent Philosophers" is a brilliant book by Diogenes Laertius. There's some in there on Aesop, though my favourite parts are the sections on Diogenes of Sinope, which are hilarious! Like who else could tell Alexandar the Great to f*** *ff! ;D


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Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

db90h

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2011, 04:42:02 AM »
The net effect is going to be that, out of consumer demand, bundles get detected (as bundles, not necessary malware) by the security products -- because that's what USERS want. They want to know if what they are about to install is going to show them 5 different bundles, as my last freeware install did. Then, no matter how clever the tactics, the smart people will opt out. The gullible will get 'got' with ever increasingly deceitful methods, as (in my opinion) with the Comical Clean Water bundle: https://plus.google....07/posts/4kwG8NwQsCS

Of course, the only problem with this is that the security companies THEMSELVES almost all heavily use bundles, free scanners in some cases, or Bing toolbar for MS. So... bleh. Maybe a new product must be developed to detect Bundles, but that's the last thing we need, another 'filter' slowing everything down.

Moral decay ... makes it hard for the few that remain ethical. At some point even those will just 'give in' if this trend is not reversed immediately.



db90h

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2011, 04:45:42 AM »
Also, I have to add, I don't think the general public has truly been informed on the bundle issue (not CNET's case specifically, in general). I mean, it is worthy of a 60 Minutes type deal, really!

40hz

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #11 on: December 15, 2011, 06:38:27 AM »
Moral decay ... makes it hard for the few that remain ethical. At some point even those will just 'give in' if this trend is not reversed immediately.

I think the the above comment cuts right to the core of the issue and the real threat it poses.

I'm seeing it starting in the FOSS world where some companies seem to be following a strategy that is roughly: "If you can't beat 'em - then corrupt 'em." Flip a few dollars at *some* of the developers in a volunteer world run on the honor system, and it's only a matter of time before the questions and muttering start.

---//---
(Setting: oddball watering hole favored by the local "Code Crowd.')

"Hey! How come those guys are getting paid and we're not? News said the project got bought by Ellison last night for $200 million. Screw this! I'm not contributing any of *MY* code or ideas for free any more. This is bullshit, man..."

    "So how about we fork it?"

"Hell with that! If those bozos can clean up on somebody else's work, so can I. I've got plenty of ideas. I'm starting a company. You want in or not?"

    "But who's going do work for free if we're the only ones gonna get paid?"

"Hey! Just ask the guys who write Java. (laughs) But you're right... That's why we gotta move fast on this. Gotta get in there so we can cash out before everyone else wakes up."

-----

Not fiction btw. I've seen it happen.  :(

I guess the Serpent finally found a way into the FOSS garden.  :-\
« Last Edit: December 15, 2011, 12:21:33 PM by 40hz »

db90h

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #12 on: December 15, 2011, 08:33:35 PM »
+1

I can only imagine the turmoil in some F/OSS projects right now. Seriously, once you throw money into a F/OSS project, it is pretty much done for. Any F/OSS project must be strictly non-commercial. The ones I've founded (with community participants) don't even accept donations, as that can be acrimonious. Who gets all the revenue from these bundles ... Well, dunno. Evenly dividing it in a way that is fair would be impossible, you'd never please everybody, and everyone would be left with a sour taste in their mouth.

Freeware is more concerning for me. Soon everything will be freeware with strings attached -- strings attached that the average Joe doesn't understand are bad for society as a whole. The practice should be outlawed, though I can't imagine how you'd draft a bill outlawing such. I consider *all bundles malware because they violate user intent*. That's my personal opinion as of today. Maybe I'm forced to change my opinion in the years to come, or maybe people will start waking up and quit being so darn greedy. And, yes, I do call it greedy if you freely give something away, then want to profit from it. If you want to profit, don't make it free.

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #13 on: December 15, 2011, 09:18:33 PM »
I think the fruit would be good news. If CNET becomes popular, developers would have an OpenCandy alternative that doesn't have negative stigma attached to it.

If CNET does not, it gives opportunities for new websites to work on alternative download installers as it brings the buzz back on download managers.

Example, I've always like the FileHippo Download Installer but since you can't annotate old versions, sometimes you don't remember which exact old version you really preferred and you end up not being able to share that with a community.

The two examples that come to mind are Opera and utorrent. Two updates that make the program worse (Opera in terms of many tab handling) and (utorrent in terms of interface) and unless you read up on past comments and then take them into memory, you won't know which old version to install for your needs at a surface's glance.

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #14 on: December 15, 2011, 10:49:33 PM »
+1

I can only imagine the turmoil in some F/OSS projects right now. Seriously, once you throw money into a F/OSS project, it is pretty much done for. Any F/OSS project must be strictly non-commercial. The ones I've founded (with community participants) don't even accept donations, as that can be acrimonious. Who gets all the revenue from these bundles ... Well, dunno. Evenly dividing it in a way that is fair would be impossible, you'd never please everybody, and everyone would be left with a sour taste in their mouth.

Freeware is more concerning for me. Soon everything will be freeware with strings attached -- strings attached that the average Joe doesn't understand are bad for society as a whole. The practice should be outlawed, though I can't imagine how you'd draft a bill outlawing such. I consider *all bundles malware because they violate user intent*. That's my personal opinion as of today. Maybe I'm forced to change my opinion in the years to come, or maybe people will start waking up and quit being so darn greedy. And, yes, I do call it greedy if you freely give something away, then want to profit from it. If you want to profit, don't make it free.

Hehehe~! I think it would be harder for us to be more diametrically opposed on this topic~! :D

For some FOSS software, let's say GPL for the sake of argument, I don't see why the authors shouldn't get paid somehow.

There's more than one way to make money, and if you're doing it above board, then I don't see a problem.

At the end of the day, are you hurting people? Are you taking advantage of them?

End users need to assume some kind of responsibility too though. I think it's a cop out to say that users don't understand blah blah blah. If you're going to use a chainsaw, and you don't know how to use one, and you cut your leg off, well who do you have to blame? The chainsaw? hardly.

Same for computers. There's a certain minimum amount of knowledge that you need to have to use one competently. If you don't know what an installer is, and can't read the EULA and installation screens... Well... sheesh. Like if I give someone a chocolate bar, and they stick it in their ear, how the heck do I get blamed because they don't know what their mouth is for?

Yeah... you need to be careful to make sure that you're being upfront and honest about things, but sheesh... There's only so much that you can do without just doing silly things. e.g. You don't want to have 5 extra screens that all say, "Are you sure? Like, really sure?", "Totally and 100% sure?", "Last chance..." ;D

There are some scummy people out there doing scummy things. But there are also good ones as well. It's pretty much case by case.

There are lots of software authors that write malware. But that doesn't make all software authors bad people. Socrates has a beard. Socrates is mortal. Therefore all mortals have beards.


Now, regarding this:

Quote
If you want to profit, don't make it free.

The why not ban virtually all web sites? If people want to profit from them, they can convert them to subscription sites. Let's start with banning Google or labeling it as malware...

Ok. That's a bit ridiculous (although the way personal information is collected now does make you wonder...), but I think you get the point.

People scream bloody murder about virtually everything done in the desktop world, but you can have a virtual mass murder spree on the web, and nobody bats an eyelash.

Kill one and you're a murderer. Kill a thousand and you're a hero.

There needs to be some kind of balance.




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db90h

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #15 on: December 15, 2011, 11:40:46 PM »
It comes down to this, as you said:

Quote
There's more than one way to make money ...

The difference is I like the idea of providing a simple service for a fair price. This 'alternate method' of revenue generation, bundling, relies on deception. Further, the introduction of so many bundled apps to a PC is not a good thing. It harms society at large, and thus is unethical. The day may come when no user trusts to install any extra PC software, thanks to bundles.

For paying F/OSS authors, I'm all for that, but we discussed the problems with that above. Free/Open Source projects, by nature, have lots of contributors, and thus division of revenue is more than a little problematic. Bundles are more likely to kill F/OSS than nurture it. Read above for this, and why.

As for the other stuff, you are on a tangent, as we are talking about bundles and software. Not web sites. Not advertising. We are speaking of invasive software seeking to gain entry into PCs, such as the aforementioned Clean Water bundle, gotta love it.

Your spin is quite good though, but it is just that ;). You can't spin away bundles.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2011, 11:58:58 PM by db90h »

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #16 on: December 15, 2011, 11:59:49 PM »
Last edit made ;). Now I'm un-notifying, as this is distracting. I think it's all been said.

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #17 on: December 16, 2011, 01:08:55 AM »

The difference is I like the idea of providing a simple service for a fair price. This 'alternate method' of revenue generation, bundling, relies on deception. Further, the introduction of so many bundled apps to a PC is not a good thing. It harms society at large, and thus is unethical. The day may come when no user trusts to install any extra PC software, thanks to bundles.


I just can't see the jump from "bundle" to "deception" or "malware".

For example:

http://www.winpcap.org/misc/links.htm

Wireshark uses WinPcap, and I don't think anyone would label that as malware or deceptive.

Bundling is just a method. It can either be upfront or it can be deceptive. But again, jumping from "some bundles are unethical" to "all bundles are unethical" is a pretty big jump.

Just because something is bundled doesn't make it malware. Microsoft Office comes with lots of applications bundled. I'd hardly call it malware. (Though sometimes I'm tempted~! ;D )

Being deceptive is another thing entirely. If the installer is labeled sufficiently, then there's no deception.



For paying F/OSS authors, I'm all for that, but we discussed the problems with that above. Free/Open Source projects, by nature, have lots of contributors, and thus division of revenue is more than a little problematic. Bundles are more likely to kill F/OSS than nurture it. Read above for this, and why.


Well, for collaborative projects, yeah, it's hard. Many aren't though. 7-Zip is 1 guy, Igor Pavlov.

I don't know Igor, but if he chose to bundle 7-Zip with some other software, I wouldn't begrudge him that freedom. If I didn't like it, I'm free to use something else. Igor has been nothing but generous with his software. I think it would be pretty ungrateful of me to point fingers at him if he did bundle his software in an honest manner.


As for the other stuff, you are on a tangent, as we are talking about bundles and software. Not web sites. Not advertising. We are speaking of invasive software seeking to gain entry into PCs, such as the aforementioned Clean Water bundle, gotta love it.

I thought the topic was about CNET, their installer fiasco/redemption, and revenue.

Ads are revenue. Tracking with cookies across different unrelated domains is invasive.

I don't really see much of a difference between a bundle and an ad on a web site. They're both methods to generate revenue. Both can be honest, and both have the potential to be deceptive.


Your spin is quite good though, but it is just that ;). You can't spin away bundles.

Well, I could spin things by saying you're making a big leap from bundle to malware, but it would just be... oh wait. It is a big leap~! :D

It's little different than saying that all software packaged with NSIS or Inno Setup are malware. It's a packaging method.

It's the same thing as "guns don't kill people, I do people kill people". ;D

I'm sure that there are bad guys out there doing bundles. But let's crucify the bad guys and not everyone.




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Paul Keith

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #18 on: December 16, 2011, 01:16:23 AM »
Quote from: Renegade
I just can't see the jump from "bundle" to "deception" or "malware".

I don't see why not. Even someone like me who came to the internet late knows about toolbar, adware and spyware bundling.

(P.S. I'm assuming you've read db9oh's posts against bundling before but if you haven't, err... that's kind of his perspective. He's talked about it a lot more in a DC thread elsewhere. The one about -ware something.)


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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #19 on: December 16, 2011, 02:15:04 AM »
Quote from: Renegade
I just can't see the jump from "bundle" to "deception" or "malware".
I don't see why not. Even someone like me who came to the internet late knows about toolbar, adware and spyware bundling.


Well, for one, it's simply bad logic - it's a hasty generalization.

I really don't know what else to say about it.

Bundling is a method of software distribution. Period. End of story.

There's nothing truly significant to be said about it beyond that. Anything further is only a matter of particulars for different ways of approaching that method.

I've given the example of Wireshark above. Is it malware?

Bundling happens very often in the hardware world. e.g. You buy some sound card or an optical drive or whatever, and you get several different programs all bundled together. Sometimes there's a launcher program, and sometimes there's a comprehensive installer.

Does it make sense to complain about, oh say, Lite-on putting Nero CD/DVD burning software in with their DVD burners? It's a pretty convenient thing to get burner software when you buy a burner.

CAN BUNDLING BE ABUSED!

YES!

Absolutely~!

However, the exact same logic that gets from "bundle" to "malware" leads to "the C programming language" to "malware". It's just silly.

C has been used for really bad stuff in the past. Really, truly nasty evil stuff. It's hard to fault C for that.


(P.S. I'm assuming you've read db9oh's posts against bundling before but if you haven't, err... that's kind of his perspective. He's talked about it a lot more in a DC thread elsewhere. The one about -ware something.)


I've probably read whatever it is you're talking about, though I can't be certain.

Though I did make myself pretty clear:


Hehehe~! I think it would be harder for us to be more diametrically opposed on this topic~! :D


;D

Meh... I suppose that it's a good thing to have people on such opposite ends of the spectrum. If we weren't tugging away in those directions, it might be more difficult to find a happy medium. :)

Compromise: Such an adjustment of conflicting interests as gives each adversary the satisfaction of thinking he has got what he ought not to have, and is deprived of nothing except what was justly his due. :P

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #20 on: December 16, 2011, 06:40:32 AM »
The real problem with bundling is it's just another form of "monetizing."

And "monetizing" is (to me) a fundamentally sneaky way of trying to make some money by talking around rather than openly trying to sell something.

Dunno. In my (admittedly personal) scheme of things, it just strikes me as an intrinsically deceptive approach to doing business. And one which provides far too many opportunities for abuse.

I'm truly starting to long for the days when it used to be: The price for this software is $xxx. If you want to use our software, pay the price we've asked. Otherwise, you can't use our software. We're sorry if some of you can't afford it. But that's the way it is.

That was called "selling."

It was great. You knew exactly what the deal was and, more importantly, exactly who you were dealing with.

Contrast that with "monetizing" and "bundling." :)
« Last Edit: December 16, 2011, 07:18:13 AM by 40hz »

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #21 on: December 16, 2011, 07:21:54 AM »
The real problem with bundling is it's just another form of "monetizing."

And "monetizing" is (to me) a fundamentally sneaky way of trying to make some money by talking around rather than openly trying to sell something.

Dunno. In my (admittedly personal) scheme of things, it just strikes me as intrinsically deceptive approach to doing business. And one which provides far too many opportunities for abuse.

I'm truly starting to long for the days when it used to be: The price for this software is $xxx. If you want to use our software, pay the price we've asked. Otherwise, you can't use our software. We're sorry if some of you can't afford it. But that's the way it is.

That was called "selling."

Contrast that with "monetizing." :)

So, should we nix TV, radio, and 99% of the Internet because they don't "sell" anything but rather make money in a round about way through ads?

Seriously. I'd like an answer to that question with a reason/justification.

I do not see any significant difference between getting eyeballs through "software" and getting eyeballs through "content".


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40hz

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #22 on: December 16, 2011, 09:03:52 AM »
So, should we nix TV, radio, and 99% of the Internet because they don't "sell" anything but rather make money in a round about way through ads?

Seriously. I'd like an answer to that question with a reason/justification.

Considering the crap that's usually on, would anybody seriously miss it? I mean seriously?

But ok, you did politely ask for a sane and serious response. So I guess I'll have to forego my usual rambling 'down-homey' off-the-top-of-head schtick and actually write something? And preferably something worth reading?

 <*GASP!*> ;D

So be it.

I'll see if I can get that done and post it sometime today. (Fingers crossed!)

Be back in a bit. :Thmbsup:
 :)

« Last Edit: December 16, 2011, 09:11:11 AM by 40hz »

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Re: CNET Download Installer Changes
« Reply #23 on: December 16, 2011, 10:21:05 AM »
@40hz - Thanks! I appreciate it! :)
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