Plaxo as malware

Who else thinks Plaxo is an unethically intrusive piece of malware?

Recently I started using this thing again after ripping it out years ago as a dangerously intrusive invasion of my privacy. Plaxo apologised back then for being worms.

It is no better now. As far as I am aware I gave no permission to Plaxo to upload my email contacts, nor to email them all inviting them to Plaxo. But it did. Including my dead father.

Somehow I invited my aunt in Australia. She accidentally invited a friend of hers. Now, I know I get busy and I get dumb but the pattern to me is too obvious. This thing is deliberately viral and deliberately misleading in its interface.

I don't doubt that Plaxo has successfully socially engineered me into doing this and that they would be able to point to something I clicked to make it happen.

But guess how easy it is to unravel this stuff. not. Every single one of my Outlook contacts needs to be manually deleted, one by one.

I don't like the way these people operate and I don't trust them. They aren't evil but they play fast and loose. I have ceased use of Plaxo.

I had to wade through help text to find out how. For anyone else who wants this creepy thing out of their lives, go here.

I'll stick to LinkedIn and facebook. Two's enough.



I positively HATE Plaxo. It has done the same stuff to me that your describe here and more. I've had to completely reimage systems before to get rid of it. I am convinced they are doing stuff with their customers' systems AND data without permission. I block them from networks that I manage. There used to be quite a rumble about them on the net. I remember a funny urban legend about them being the biggest botnet on the planet. I don't use Plaxo and I never will!!

Plaxo does not suck

Not sure why Plaxo (or your use) went crazy and invited a pile of people, but Plaxo is about the best central contact service -- as of yet, i haven't seen a LinkedIn contact sync application. I want you to keep your info up to date, and I want to check in with that service to ensure my version of your contact info is the same as yours is--No other company is doing it with the size/scale/uptake as Plaxo (even without having been acquired by Comcast).

I'll stand up and say.. Plaxo doesn't suck! I actually would like to have everyone on Plaxo.. please join.. deal with the invites, it really isn't that bad. If i change my title at Splunk (which i will be doing soon), the update will instantly flow to Plaxo and it just freakin works. Sure, Google has contacts, but that only works with Google mail users. Honestly, i wish LinkedIn would have bought Plaxo because my professional network is on LinkedIn.

Sync tools are great, but again, I DON"T WANT TO UPDATE YOUR CONTACT INFO.. you, please do it for me.. post it to Plaxo (or whatever the alternative that has critical mass is). Sure Plaxo sucks.. sure, Twitter sucks too.. but they both have enough users and critical mas that they're worth it -- i think.

they're out of it

If it was only me, OK. I screw up all the time. but the only thing my aunt did was respond to an invite from me by registering on Plaxo. She does not have the toolbar installed and there is no software on her machine identified as "plaxo", yet it emailed her contacts.

They lost my trust when they crawled all over my machine in the past and now they're out of it forever.


Having been on the receiving end of one too many Plaxo invites that the sender swears they didn't send on purpose, I have to agree. I have a mail filter that sends any and all Plaxo mail I get straight in to the trash. I've had a couple of friends recommend as a good, non-spammy alternative, but thus far, given the general reliability of friends on technical matters, have been unwilling to try it.

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