Messenger Plus! - Let's focus on another Sacred Cow for a while

Discussion in 'Windows MSN Messenger' started by PA Bear, Oct 1, 2004.

  1. PA Bear

    PA Bear Guest

    Enough about the 'End of Free Hotmail' already. Let's dissect Messenger
    Plus! now...

    Sandi's take on Messenger Plus!
    http://inetexplorer.mvps.org/data/messenger_plus.htm

    Ready, steady, GO!
    --
    ~Robear Dyer (PA Bear)
    MS MVP-Windows (IE/OE), AH-VSOP

    WinXP SP2: What's New for Internet Explorer and Outlook Express
    http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/sp2/ieoeoverview.mspx

    What You Should Know About Spyware
    http://www.microsoft.com/athome/security/spyware/devioussoftware.mspx

    "There is no 'silver bullet' solution."
    http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=33131
     
    PA Bear, Oct 1, 2004
    #1
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  2. PA Bear

    Guest Guest

    That's a nice article. Patchou is far too arrogant to do
    anything about the problem, as long as they (lop) are
    paying him/for server then it will be bound to stay... the
    support forum attitude it absolutely disgusting, all you
    will get is something along the lines of "but it is
    OPTIONAL!!!11" - sure, what if you actually want to support
    it? That forum is mainly built up of ignorant children
    anyway, which makes sense, Messenger Plus! has turned into
    some kind of child's toy. I would love to hear
    Microsoft's/MSN's thoughts on it.
     
    Guest, Oct 2, 2004
    #2
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  3. PA Bear

    PA Bear Guest

    For those wondering what all the flap is about regarding lop.com, please see
    the following links:

    http://www.doxdesk.com/parasite/lop.html

    http://www.spywareinfo.com/articles/lop/

    http://www.spywareinfo.com/newsletter/archives/june-2003/3.php
    (dated, admittedly, but even the current version of MP gives you a "drive
    by" install of lop.com)

    What Users Say (Good & Bad) About MP
    http://www.download.com/3302-2150_4-10320442.html

    <quote>
    26-Sep-2004 03:22:12 PM
    "I've used this program for 3 years now."
    This is awsome software that is now into the third version. I've used it
    from version 1.2 without any complaintes. it actually runs more stable than
    msn messenger itself. For all the people who complain about the OPTIONAL
    sponsor it should just teach you to actually READ the EULA :). if you did
    click to fast it is fully documented on how to remove it. This software
    would be perfect without the sponsor but then patchou would be living in the
    street. get over it you selfish people.
    </quote>

    <quote>
    26-Sep-2004 06:52:12 AM
    "Sponsor disguised as a EULA to trick people into installing..."
    Although Patchou and his flock of sheep try to convince people that the
    sponsor is easily uninstalled, this is not the case for everyone... Yet
    Patchou and these 'loyal' forum members choose to show nothing but ignorance
    and arrogance towards anyone who tries to say that uninstalling and
    reinstalling plus, does NOT remove the sponsor... As a previous beta tester
    and previous 'loyal' follower of Patchou and this software, I can guarantee
    that the sponsor does NOT always uninstall without the help of third party
    software such as Adaware... Patchou now makes enough money from people being
    'tricked' into installing the sponsor, that greed has taken over and he no
    longer cares about the users of his software... Although Plus is a good
    addon for MSN, I advise people to take particular care when installing so as
    to avoid the installation of what is definitely spyware... I don't know who
    you are trying to kid, Patchou, but it is just that...spyware... It is not a
    toolbar like the google toolbar... It is intrusive and very hard to get rid
    of... Therefore, it is nothing but spyware...
    </quote>

    IMO Pachou is to be congratulated for attempting to clarify his relationship
    with C2 Media (who *still* subtly bury malware in what's called a 'drive by'
    install)

    Help with Hijackware
    http://aumha.org/a/parasite.htm
    http://aumha.org/a/quickfix.htm
    http://mvps.org/winhelp2002/unwanted.htm
    http://inetexplorer.mvps.org/Darnit.htm
    http://www.mvps.org/sramesh2k/Malware_Defence.htm
     
    PA Bear, Oct 3, 2004
    #3
  4. PA Bear

    Stigmata Guest

    i must agree with you on mainly on the attitude of the plus
    forums, but then again, it is optional. you have every
    right to say no to it. did you actually read the installer?
    How can you call patchou arrogant. would you prefere
    msgplus to have a price tag? i was (and maybe still am) one
    of these ignorant children. but wdz, chris, chrono and
    others have worked extremly hard on the forums. yes it has
    been given a title as a spam forum, but there are many
    people including myself who actually give true honest help
    and advice when needed...
     
    Stigmata, Oct 3, 2004
    #4
  5. Hmmm.. interesting.. If it weren't for the 'sponsor' he'd be living in the
    street. I remember seeing a post about Messenger Plus on one of the
    anti-spyware sites where Patchou's response was basically "Too bad."

    Here's a thought that I've seen on a lot of other sites.. PAYPAL. Or
    StormPay. Your 6 million + members could donate 1 dollar, and you'd never
    have to work again.. But, that's not an option, right?

    I liked Messenger Plus BEFORE it installed a bunch of spyware crap on my
    computer (This was before Patchou stated it in his EULA). I haven't used it
    since, and I don't recommend it to anyone. Simply because I've seen
    articles that say where his 'sponsor' is optional, it still installs.

    Plus, I agree with Sandi about the "Pass-through toolbar". If I want to
    change my homepage, search page, and other pages back to what I wanted, then
    C2Media, MPlus, or whoever is the 'sponsor' has NO right adding another
    toolbar to my computer (for monitoring my habits).
    Patrick.
     
    Patrick Dickey--MSN Beta Tester, Oct 3, 2004
    #5
  6. If you would like to advise what part of the article you think is not
    technically accurate, I'm more than happy to investigate.
     
    Sandi - Microsoft MVP, Oct 3, 2004
    #6
  7. Firstly, you have to understand the Messenger demographics. Do you really expect a 14-year
    old kid in the Netherlands to open a PayPal account, connect to their bank account and send
    money online for a piece of software? Plus's largest bulk of users are not in North America
    nor do they own credit cards; how do you expect them to pay? Also, "donation" links rarely
    get much attention; you either charge for something or you don't.

    Secondly, Microsoft itself doesn't look too favorably on third-party tools that are making a
    significant amount of money of their own free software. The whole "legality" of Plus is
    actually questionable (although the EULA can be interpreted in several ways).

    Thirdly, there are plenty of "freeware"-like applications that have the same sort of
    "sponsor" type model, everything from the banner ad within Opera to some FTP tools I've seen.
    This isn't anything new.

    Finally, don't believe everything you read. I can find you articles that say iPod's are
    delivery mechanisms for transporting people into various cults or that Bill Gates is an
    alien. If you say no to the sponsor, then the sponsor doesn't install; there is absolutely
    no basis and plenty of work has been done by cynics in the past to disprove this.

    All posts unless otherwise specified are (c) 2004 Jonathan Kay.
    You *must* contact me for redistribution rights.
     
    Jonathan Kay [MVP], Oct 3, 2004
    #7
  8. Hi,

    I most certainly agree =)

    All posts unless otherwise specified are (c) 2004 Jonathan Kay.
    You *must* contact me for redistribution rights.
     
    Jonathan Kay [MVP], Oct 3, 2004
    #8
  9. PA Bear

    PA Bear Guest

    Thank you, Jonathan! I was hoping to drag you into this, er..., discussion.
     
    PA Bear, Oct 4, 2004
    #9
  10. =)

    I think it is an important discussion topic simply because of all the misinformation about
    it. However, one thing I forgot to mention is that no one is forcing anyone else to use
    Plus -- I know plenty of people that refuse to use Plus for this and other reasons.

    All posts unless otherwise specified are (c) 2004 Jonathan Kay.
    You *must* contact me for redistribution rights.
     
    Jonathan Kay [MVP], Oct 4, 2004
    #10
  11. Ok, first of all, I want to clarify something. I didn't say that your
    program wasn't worthwhile. In fact, I've recommended in other news groups
    that MSN should incorporate some of the features that you provide. I did,
    however, say that I don't recommend it to anyone BECAUSE of the spyware
    ("Sponsor"). If people ask me about it, I warn them that the spyware is an
    issue.

    I wasn't sure if I would even post in here the first time, until I read two
    things. The quote on Sandi's site about " yes, it could be redesigned to
    warn you better but then, nobody would install it, let's be honest" and the
    quote in PA Bear's reply that says "without the sponsor but then patchou
    would be living in the street".

    Since, you are committed to your users, may I give you a couple of
    suggestions? (Hoping you'll read these). If you're not going to drop the
    sponsor, then give people three options. One is no sponsor, nothing... One
    is no sponsor( (in the sense of shortcuts, toolbars, and pop up ads), but
    then at the bottom of the messenger window (or somewhere in the window),
    they will have an ad banner. They don't have to click on that, it's not
    targeted, just whatever ad the sponsor or whomever decides that ALL
    Messenger Plus people will get at that moment.. Or, they can choose to
    install the sponsor with the popups, shortcuts, and the toolbars..

    Just so everyone's clear, I realize that the second option may not be
    feasible since it's MSN's Messenger program and not Patchou's.. But, it's
    still an idea.

    As for my earlier post about making donations, it works for other sites.
    And, you are respected enough in the Messenger world (as it may be) that
    people would donate if they can. Another option would be an affiliation
    page with a company such as element5. I would imagine that people would buy
    a program through your page, if they were looking for it. Just because of
    your status where Messenger Plus is concerned. (Meaning, they would be more
    apt to purchase the program through your affiliation, then say through
    mine). And yes, I realize that you may have considered all of these
    options. If so, then forgive me for bringing them back up again.

    Finally, I also want to clarify one more paragraph in my earlier post. I
    had downloaded Messenger Plus before you started to include the "Sponsor".
    One day, I got a notice saying there was an update to Messenger Plus.. So, I
    updated. And, a bunch of shortcuts appeared on my desktop. When I went to
    uninstall them, the window showed that Messenger Plus installed them.. So, I
    uninstalled MPlus as well. This was BEFORE the version where you started to
    inform people that they could opt out of installing the sponsor.

    Patrick.
     
    Patrick Dickey--MSN Beta Tester, Oct 4, 2004
    #11
  12. PA Bear

    Brian! Guest

    I'm not replying directly to you, yours is just the post I landed on when I
    hit "Reply Group".

    I have been using MsgPlus since Jan 2003 (Pre C2Media) by a friend of mine.
    The features that MsgPlus provided to the average Messenger user were great,
    and Patchou has gone out of his way to add more features and improve the GUI
    so that more people can use these features even easier.

    I do not install the sponsor on my home PC as it is also the main home PC
    that my kids have access to. While I do not doubt Patchou's word about
    having the C2Media installer cut right down to keep as much of the 'usual'
    stuff out of it, I don't trust my kids (7yr, 5yr & 4yr) not to click on
    something that appears on screen if my back is turned for 5 seconds.

    Since C2Media has come onboard with Patchou I have always installed the
    sponsor program on my initial install, then removed MsgPlus and reinstalled
    it without the sponsor, and I have had no problems whatsoever with
    everything being removed from my fave list and my homepage being put back to
    rights.

    Below is a post I made to the MsgPlus boards.
    ===
    You've got my vote Patchou. I've just had people on a game website
    messageboard giving MsgPlus a slammin, so I jumped in and corrected them
    about the optional sponsor, etc...

    This project makes Messenger worth using. If we waited for M$ to come out
    with the same level or quality of features on their own, I know that I for
    one would be old and grey before that would even happen.

    I freely and openly offer a mirror download link for your program of every
    release since just before MP2! (IIRC), & there is nothing I can read that
    will convince me that I am helping a "software criminal".

    Keep up the work, try to let these attacks against your person pass you by,
    and be the bigger and better man by rising above the level of these ignorant
    bigots that wish to attack you and your work.

    How many people install Kazaa, yet don't complain about the amount of
    garbage it forcibly installs onto a computer? I wonder how many of their
    userbase have written nasty emails with personal scathing attacks against
    the software creator, etc...!

    Plus gives people the option of a sponsor package being installed, yet
    Patchou gets branded as worse than Satan because of it. Gimme a break!
     
    Brian!, Oct 4, 2004
    #12
  13. I'm with you 1000% Brian, Good work Patchou.
     
    Earl Caravelle II, Oct 4, 2004
    #13
  14. Its Sandi thanks Patchou.
    It isn't *my* newsgroup thread. I didn't start it, and the only post I have
    made to it apart from this one is a request for more information about
    supposed 'technical inaccuracy' which I see has gone unanswered. I have
    provided an email address for correspondence if you choose to use it.
     
    Sandi - Microsoft MVP, Oct 5, 2004
    #14
  15. PA Bear

    Joe Simpson Guest

    The MP installer is delibrately misleading, notice there is only 1 license
    agreement; for the malware, and none for MP itself, because if users had to
    click through 2 License agreements they'd actually pay attention and look at
    what the 2 different agreements are about and hence reduce the number of
    people being mislead in to installing the malware. Of course, a problem with
    not providing a seperate license agreement for MP means patchou is not
    disclaiming warranty on his work and hence opening himself up to claims of
    compensation should a user have any sort of difficulty with MP. Here's an
    interesting bit of info most people aren't aware of; C2 Media pay 6 cents
    USD per installation of their malware and patchou has stated publically he
    gets about 800,000 suckers per month installing it, simple mathematics will
    tell you that equates to $48,000 USD per month. I'm sure if you're like
    patchou and like making your money off the misery of others you'll tell
    users the malware is harmless and that he's just a poor programmer trying to
    make a living. You can see how greed has blinded him.
     
    Joe Simpson, Oct 7, 2004
    #15
  16. Your statement is in direct contradiction to a message by Patchou in which
    he said:

    " "For the record: I'being paid by searches (and only for some of them), so
    I wouldn't win a cent even if a billion users installed my sponsor tomorrow
    .. PaidByInstall are generalle more vicious adware (sypwares) that do things
    I wouldn't want to happen to my users."
    http://msgplus.mybboard.com/showthread.php?tid=24337&pid=234631

    Do you have cites, or articles, that bolster your statement?


    --
    Hyperlinks are used to ensure advice remains current
    _______________________________________
    Sandi - Microsoft MVP since 1999 (IE/OE)
    http://inetexplorer.mvps.org/
     
    Sandi - Microsoft MVP, Oct 7, 2004
    #16
  17. Information about Patchou's alleged income that was posted to this newsgroup
    has already been removed from my web page, together with the bold font
    warning that it could not be corroborated.

    My first thinking was that the information is in the public domain anyway
    and available via Google, which gets far more hits than my page, but it
    wasn't right to put it in there, hence the removal. I went past simply
    reporting on MP and the Sponsor Programme. For that I apologise.

    --
    Hyperlinks are used to ensure advice remains current
    _______________________________________
    Sandi - Microsoft MVP since 1999 (IE/OE)
    http://inetexplorer.mvps.org/
     
    Sandi - Microsoft MVP, Oct 10, 2004
    #17
  18. PA Bear

    Brian! Guest

    I see you're at it again Sandi. Update of 15th October.
    ==========
    A person by the name of P, Cyril ( -
    (***the email address has been changed to protect P. Cyril from spam and
    flamemail***) is, at the date of writing this segment (15 October 2004), the
    name behind www.msgplus.net
    ==========

    Now while this is all well and good, during your synopsis you repost the
    edited email address and then on the same line you inform people what to
    replce your edited portion with in order to make it a valid address.

    Slightly hypocrytical, wouldn't you say?
    ==========
    Synopsis:
    Secure Software, Inc = Cyril Paciullo/Paciullo Cyril, Alex Shamash and
    Jason Lucas
    www.msgplus net = P, Cyril ( - edited
    address - replace popularemailprovider.com with ************** [removed
    actual provider with FAR too many stars])
    ==========

    Another thing, you keep going on about the useage statistics that MsgPlus
    sends back to Patchou like it's a crime to see what features are being used
    the most, so that he knows what to focus on for future releases.

    I'm sure I've seen similar tick boxes on Messenger itself, as well as
    Windows Media Player. It's ok for M$ to request stats on users habits, but
    when Patchou request similar kinds of info (more than likely, it's less
    intrusive than what WMP or MSN requests), it's not allowed? Also, the
    option for user data for MSN and WMP is ON by default. I know this as I've
    just done a system rebuild with XP and I had to turn these 'useage data'
    tick boxes off myself after installing both Messenger (MSN and Windows
    versions) and WMP10. Oops, another point of your argument against MsgPlus
    out the window.

    For crying out loud, grow up, download version 3.25 and see for yourself
    what Patchou has done to try to keep the SIX MILLION people that use his
    software add-on happy.

    Regards,
    Brian!
     
    Brian!, Oct 21, 2004
    #18
  19. PA Bear

    anonymous Guest

    The MSN Messenger "Usage data" option was *not* turned on by default when I
    installed messenger on my machine.
    On one hand you say, "I'm sure I've seen similar tick boxes on Messenger
    itself" (you don't sound too certain there) then in the next breath you say,
    "I know this as I've just done a system rebuild with XP and I had to turn
    these 'useage data' tick boxes off myself after installing both Messenger
    (MSN and Windows versions)" Um so which is it??


     
    anonymous, Oct 21, 2004
    #19
  20. PA Bear

    Mike Hall Guest

    Yo Jack

    The word is 'libel'.. :)


     
    Mike Hall, Oct 21, 2004
    #20
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