Snopes peddling malware?

By Justin Mann on January 28, 2008, 8:44 PM
Every once in a while, we hear about a legit site pushing malware. The reasons are varied, with some sites getting hacked, others relying on 3rd party vendors that may be less than trustworthy or they may just plain not feel there is anything wrong with pushing annoying or downright bad software onto people.

Snopes has been targeted as one of them. It seems for half a year now the company has been pushing Zango, formerly 180Solutions, onto people visiting the site in one form or another. Zango, whose own (former) employees don't have anything good to say about it, has been spotted more than once peddling their wares in shady ways. So much so that the FTC saw it fit to levy a huge fine on the company. So why would Snopes, a site that has gained a considerable amount of fame for interesting factoids in dispelling or confirming urban legends, want to associate with these folks?

Money is one reason, though third party association is another. Regardless, it seems Snopes is very well aware that they are divvying up ads for Zango. I suppose someone has to, else where would Zango get the money to pay their millions in fines the next time the FTC comes after them.




User Comments: 2

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smithkl42 said:
After reading Alex' posting, and your article above, Iíll confess, Iím a little perplexed as to what Alex is complaining about. As far as I can tell, heís taking Zango and Snopes to task for showing ads. Itís a unique charge, Iíll grant you, but somewhat mystifying in its scope.For some badly needed perspective, you may want to refer to my blog post responding to Alex:[url]http://smithkl42.blogspot.com/2008/01/regrettable-
illiness.html[/url]Ken SmithCTO, Zango
trumper said:
That's a terribly lazy and unhelpful straw man, Ken. Alex explains in the article why Zango is so rightly mistrusted. I'm sure *you* think it's fine for your company to force adware onto untechnical people who don't understand what they're installing, and to "help" them by redirecting typo'd URLs to your clients, and serving pop-up ads that they can't turn off. Some people see this as poor behaviour - it's not because they're against "showing ads". Techspot is running ethical AdSense right on this page. Stop kidding yourself.(It looks like Snopes has dropped you, anyway: http://sunbeltblog.blogspot.com/2008/02/zango-defends-snopes
html)[Edited by trumper on 2008-02-11 03:48:19]
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