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Cingular, Priceline, and Travelocity agreed to pay fines of $30,000-$35,000 and investigate their method of delivery for online advertisements. While the fines themselves don’t even amount to a slap on the wrist, the requirements for the future seem promising, including a more stringent process of using ads: “through companies that fully describe their adware, that obtain customer consent to install it and that make it practical for consumers to remove those programs from their computers.”
The news comes from New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo who released a press statement: “Advertisers will now be held responsible when their ads end up on consumers’ computers without full notice and consent… Advertisers can no longer insulate themselves from liability by turning a blind eye to how their advertisements are delivered, or by placing ads through intermediaries, such as media buyers.”
While “fully describe” and “make it practical” are relatively subjective terms, here’s hoping that a case involving high profile companies will be a step toward minimizing adware / spyware / crapware.