Skype pushing bloatware

In a previous blog post I complained that Microsoft is allowing deceptive adds (the kind that drives our grandparents crazy) in Skype. This seems strange as one would expect Microsoft to protect it’s good name.

However it seems Microsoft could still do worse. So they didn’t give up and changed the Skype installer to install bloatware. And Yes, MSN and Bing plugins are just that, bloatware. My Skype told me that there was an update so I ran it and look what the Setup screen is showing me:

Skype-bloatware

Yes that’s right. To enable or disable two options I get half of a checkbox. Thank you guys! It seems I’m not the only one that noticed this as there is a slew of threads on this on the Skype community forums. Here is just a sample, there are many, many pages of threads about this issue:

lame upgrade tries to force msn.com and bing on me
Bing search box hidden during Skype install
update window doesn’t permit me to unclick MSN
How do I get rid of Bing?

Looking at the dates on those threads it looks like the bloatware shoveling has been going on for years now.

First of all… MSN??? Why??
Are *any* of the ‘views’ msn.com gets actually real? Because it seems to me that that site is only frequented by people who are unable to fix their browser, which comes pre-installed with MSN as the homepage. People get pushed to MSN when they log out of hotmail. They get pushed to MSN by updates to software such is this one. But are there any actual people that actually voluntarily visit msn.com? Post a comment if you do, I really want to hear from you (because I don’t believe you exist actually).
Why oh why does Microsoft f*ck up good products (such as Skype and Hotmail) to push some mediocre news/community site/portal on us that no one cares about?

Second of all… This DPI thing. According to MSDN this scaling feature has been a part of Windows since XP (2001). It’s now 2015 and even the products owned by Microsoft itself are STILL not behaving correctly with it. I can only hope that 4K panels come onto the market soon. They will force people to run at absurdly high DPI settings (300% – 400%) to be able to read text. At that point screens such as the Skype setup screen will become totally unusable, forcing the techs to FINALLY fix it.

Sigh.

When I heard that Microsoft was buying Skype I actually, naively, thought this might make my life better as a Skype user. Tighter integration with Windows and Exchange seemed an obvious enhancement that Microsoft would add… Silly me. Instead MS has used it’s resources to add deceptive adds and drive-by installers to Skype, whilst neglecting known issues that could have been easily fixed by now.

Computing is in a sad state. The leading tech companies are driving their users mad with business tactics that one would expect from scammers instead. Start focusing on building good products again please!

One response to “Skype pushing bloatware

  1. Pingback: Windows doesn’t take no for an answer | Stijn de Witt's Blog

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