Saturday, April 22, 2006

Questions for Ben Edelman (ClickZ)

“Spyware expert Ben Edelman is trying to get beyond inferences and document what's really going on. He's able to do this because he works directly with infected computers to identify harmful download and marketing practices. He can say with certainty, for instance, that a Yahoo! Publisher Network ad was syndicated out to an unethical spyware environment, because he documented it on his very own computer.

Yahoo! tends to figure prominently in Edelman's investigations, and he says it's not because he's targeting the company specifically. "When I look in dark alleys, Yahoo! is there to be found," he said. "I didn't pick Yahoo!. Yahoo! picked me."

Edelman recently talked with ClickZ about his ongoing investigations into spyware, whether there's such a thing as "legitimate adware," and the cascading chains of affiliates and ad network relationships that he says ultimately harm advertisers.”