Have you heard these inane “Get Zwinky” commercials? The entire ad is animated figures and a repeated “get zwinky, get zwinky”. It truly makes me want to rectify the situation with a shotgun. What the heck is Zwinky?
I decided to find out. So I head over to Zwinky (using Sandboxie for protection), and I find that Zwinky is a toolbar. How nice, let’s see what features this toolbar offers. (I’m alreay biased, why do I need a toolbar? I don’t even use Google’s toolbar)
“Toolbar Features: Turn yourself into a 3D image!
“Bonus: Also includes Smiley Central™, Cursor Mania™, Popular Screensavers™, the MyWebSearch® search box and Search Assistant – relevant search results in response to incorrectly formatted browser address requests.”
ALARMS and SIRENS should be going off right now… Smileys, Cursors, Screensavers, CRAP… and to top it off? MyWebSearch searchbox. If you know anything about adware you are quite familiar with MyWebSearch. Adware purveyors extraordinare, I bet their EULA is interesting, let’s take a look.
5. Privacy and Use of Data
No Spyware, No Adware. The MyWebSearch toolbar does not collect any personal information about you (such as your name, email address, etc.). Further, it does not: (a) collect or report back to us (or anyone else) any information about sites you visit on the Internet; (b) collect or “screen-scrape” any search queries or information that you provide to any other web-sites; (c) serve pop-ups when you are on other websites; or (d) collect or report back to us (or anyone else) any data regarding your computer keystrokes or other data unrelated to the services the Toolbar provides.
Search Queries. The MyWebSearch toolbar, in the course of processing a given search query, sends a request to our servers. This request includes the keyword query, time of day, browser type, default language setting, IP address, an anonymous unique ID, and a code which identifies the marketing or distribution source of the toolbar used by you to conduct your search. “
No Adware, give me a break. I’m surprised they didn’t claim to have the answer for peace in the Middle East. These guys are scum, their products are crap, and now they are marketing to kids. Wonderful.