Thursday, May 2, 2013

How installer bundle companies solicit developers

If you ever wondered how freeware/shareware developers are solicited by installer bundle companies, here's an example I received recently:

Dear Software Developer, Did you know that you could be earning money every time someone downloads your software? 
In fact, hundreds of developers just like you are already turning downloads into profits through partnership with SweetPacks. My name is Limor Garten, and I am a partnership manager at SweetPacks ( 
We create monetization opportunities from software installations through websites such asCNET (, and MetaInstaller. To find out about how you could earn money with every software download, please contact me directly at or leave your details at Thanks very much,J******* M*****SweetPacks Team

It's long past time that companies who sign up for such abusive installer bundles start being penalized for harming the integrity, performance, and overall experience of countless PCs, and contributing to a general lack of trust for all third-party applications.

What are installer bundles?

For those that don't know, installer bundles are those deceptive, unwanted, additional pieces of software, often browser toolbars/add-ons, that present themselves in an intentionally easy to miss little checkbox during installation of some Windows software, particularly freeware and shareware. This terrible industry is so profitable that free, open source software is often repackaged with these bundles, then advertised and distributed by some random 'download site'.

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