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RandomUser
 
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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 8:46 pm

What's the latest news on this? I don't read German, and I do believe this thread belongs here in this forum, since it affects the credibility of the mozilla foundation. It does seem like the spyware is being authorized and not a coding mistake (though certainly a judgment one). And the "testing phase" thing is ominous since it means a successful trial run may result in it being broadened -- possibly into other versions of firefox? Is there any way we can get these people kicked off the Mozilla Foundation's board of directors? Not good. If it's already in the german newswires, it's only a matter of time before it gets picked up by slashdot and google news. Microsoft will have a field day pushing this in the press.

Is there anyone in a position of power in the Mozilla Foundation that will chastise the people from the Board of Directors named in this fiasco so far? This needs to be nipped in the bud, and quickly, with a proactive statement from the Foundation repudiating what's happening, instead of condoning it as the responses from the Board of Directors seem to indicate.

I don't mind if Mozilla gets money for searchplugin placement or search referrals, but I mind the datamining aspect quite a bit. The data-mining operation makes Firefox spyware.

rfrangioni77

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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 8:46 pm

garyniger wrote:American companies never cease to disgust.


Ironic.

steeler_fan

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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 8:52 pm

Neil

esavior

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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 8:53 pm

steeler_fan wrote:https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=265522#c7

I totally already posted that :D
Mindjunk
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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 9:05 pm

Thanks for digging into the research background on this issue, esavior. I see you've just updated your post and will do so for new developments. I'll keep an eye on this thread for new developments. I think you're right that the failure of disclosure is at the source of this issue.

fnkmaster
 
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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 9:22 pm

I don't like the idea of unknown entities paying Mozilla unknown amounts of money to place features in Mozilla software, period. That was always what the Netscape browser was about, and why everybody in the know always used the Mozilla builds, not the Netscape builds, until we moved to Firefox. The idea of Mozilla playing the paid placement game leaves me feeling sick. I have no problem with people making money, but I want my browser to have features that represent MY interests, not some random company's. Even if in this case it was eBay's idea to do this and get MediaPlex involved, without disclosure and discussion with the FF user community, it's unacceptable.

And like I said, I'd rather contribute more money and time (I have already contributed substantial amounts of both) to Mozilla than see paid placement of features in my favorite browser. If FF becomes about that, then I suspect you'll see unofficial builds without all the "great new features" we can expect to come our way soon will take over. Put up a whiny note, tell me to donate 20 bucks or I won't see a version 1.1, whatever you need, let me know. But don't sell me out.

Dear world: keep your grubby fucking mitts off of my browser. Dear Mozilla foundation: have you lost your mind by deciding to risk the only lasting asset you have, the love and goodwill of the community and hard won brand and trademark value of the Mozilla name?

rso
 
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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 9:49 pm

fnkmaster wrote:...

Seriously - if this were slipped into the US release of Firefox, think of what the reaction would be by the community.

How do you know that it is not already there at other places?

esavior

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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 9:53 pm

I think I figured it out!!! I think I know the mediaplex connection
http://www.clickz.com/news/article.php/423321
In a big coup for the online advertising player, Mediaplex on Wednesday snared a five-year contract to serve eBay's banner advertising on other Web sites.

Axel at one point mensioned ebay wanted the links to refer from a single source. That didnt make sense to me at the time but now it does! I think firefox has become a giant click through ad for ebay. Normally how it works is a site will have a link to ebay and when someone clicks it, it goes through mediaplex that way they can keep track of who is getting click throughs. Firefox is now a partner of ebay.de, and because of how a click through is set up it has to refer from a single address and thats why it points to webtip. Webtip becomes the referer and dumps u at the normal mediaplex link which sends you to ebay! So everytime you search on the search bar for ebay you are giving firefox a click through.
Mindjunk
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guest123

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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 9:54 pm

rso wrote:
fnkmaster wrote:...

Seriously - if this were slipped into the US release of Firefox, think of what the reaction would be by the community.

How do you know that it is not already there at other places?


I sincerely hope mozilla foundation states in fact in their webpage before its too late & they loose their credibility. If they have some rationale to use it, then clearly state in; else appologise for misleading users.
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_hb_
 
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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 10:02 pm

rso wrote:
fnkmaster wrote:...

Seriously - if this were slipped into the US release of Firefox, think of what the reaction would be by the community.

How do you know that it is not already there at other places?



Have a look in the folder where you installed Firefox ( example : C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\

There is a subfolder called searchplugins\ where you have a file named ebay.src

Open this with notepad / ascii-editor of your choice gives you a line that read as :

action="http://search.ebay.com/search/search.dll"


In the german version that should have been :

action="http://search.ebay.de/search/search.dll"

This will link straight to the ebay-search. No problem there.


BUT in the german version this line reads like :

action="http://www.webtip.ch/cgi-bin/mozilla/tracker_qry_de.pl"

This directs you to a tracking server ( mediaplex .... ) that will redirect you to ebay.de



THATS the way you may KNOW.

jasidog

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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 10:34 pm

I'm guessing from this thread there's no official Mozilla foundation position been given on this or this sort of thing as yet?

505

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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 10:38 pm

I can see a lot of people are being upset with this, and it makes bad PR, but how do you know the EN version of FF doesn't do the same thing when searching with Google. Sure, everybody uses Google and likes it, so why suspect something. But think about it, you cannot know what Google is doing with all the data (searches, e-mail etc.). I'm not accusing Google of anything but...
Take a look at the Google searchplugin, google.src in /searchplugins. Now compare that to the URL when doing a search with the Google plugin. It would add "client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official" to the URL. This is not in the searchplugin, but in some file in browser.jar But did I head anyone worry about that? No, just the fact that there is a redirect doesn't mean they can mine more then Google can. Google has the ability to know how many searches are done from firefox, what kind of search etc. And it has been in firefox for a very long time.

See http://forums.mozillazine.org/viewtopic.php?t=143589 for more the google search plugin adding extra info to the URL.

_hb_
 
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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 10:53 pm

jasidog wrote:I'm guessing from this thread there's no official Mozilla foundation position been given on this or this sort of thing as yet?



nope.

Discussion at the german board began Nov 10, 2004 12:49

Sa Nov 13, 2004 19:42 came the first replay from "official mozilla/europe staff" Axel Hecht.

So, tell my about having a lot of time for a decent reaction.

No reaction as so far.

Yesterday, Nov. 16. the issue was mentioned in one of the biggest / the biggest german computer forum

http://www.heise.de/newsticker/

that was when the rage began.

There came some lame postings from members of mozilla/europe staff ... couldn't calm the issue down.

No statement on official mozilla websites as so far ....

wait and see.

rfrangioni77

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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 11:02 pm

jasidog wrote:I'm guessing from this thread there's no official Mozilla foundation position been given on this or this sort of thing as yet?


I'm sure they're still trying to get to the bottom of everything.

It's not like they can walk down the hall in their building to the Mozilla Europe office and start rolling heads...not to mention, if I were the boobs at Mozilla Europe and it is indeed spyware I stuck in my translation of Firefox, I'd be hiding under any rock I can find right now. Axel must've drawn the short straw for posting here.

<edit>

Also, we need to go easy on trashing Mozilla as a whole for this. Someone said it best earlier when they said apparently Mozilla Europe got too much free reign to do things....they're obviously not responsible enough to be left alone to play.

</edit>
Last edited by rfrangioni77 on November 17th, 2004, 1:26 am, edited 1 time in total.

guest123

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Post Posted November 16th, 2004, 11:09 pm

esavior wrote:I think I figured it out!!! I think I know the mediaplex connection
http://www.clickz.com/news/article.php/423321
In a big coup for the online advertising player, Mediaplex on Wednesday snared a five-year contract to serve eBay's banner advertising on other Web sites.

Axel at one point mensioned ebay wanted the links to refer from a single source. That didnt make sense to me at the time but now it does! I think firefox has become a giant click through ad for ebay. Normally how it works is a site will have a link to ebay and when someone clicks it, it goes through mediaplex that way they can keep track of who is getting click throughs. Firefox is now a partner of ebay.de, and because of how a click through is set up it has to refer from a single address and thats why it points to webtip. Webtip becomes the referer and dumps u at the normal mediaplex link which sends you to ebay! So everytime you search on the search bar for ebay you are giving firefox a click through.


I thought this post and the referred link made it clear that Mediaplex is an *e-bay nominated* company to track the site visit in e-bay. So, dosen't it to some extent justify the whole episode? I guess this might be a right point to stop this minor issue to snowball into a unnecessary & major controversy; remember there are hawks outside to waiting to get slightest weakness in firefox and lets not make it worse by speculating things.
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