The past three months have brought a dramatic spike in threats, demand letters, and “requests” — sent from companies who make unwanted software (some might call the programs spyware) to those who detect, remove, block, or write about these programs.
Threatening or suing critics isn’t a new idea. Claria made headlines in September 2003 when it filed suit against PC Pitstop, alleging unfair business practices, trade libel, defamation, and interference with contract arising out of PC Pitstop’s description of Claria’s software. But with more and more threats with each passing week, it’s becoming hard even to keep track of the accusations. I’ve therefore put together a new table listing complainants, targets, and summarized demands.