View Full Version : Alexa - spyware?
11-26-2003, 05:04 AM
I am reading many posts in this forum that mention the use of the Alexa toolbar. I can remember using this tool back in 2000 - and dumped it because i was informed that it was spyware...is this still the case? And if so, why is everyone supporting it? Do the benefits outweight the costs?
11-26-2003, 12:06 PM
It's still "spyware" in a sense, since its purpose is to track where you go on the net and to report that information back to its database - it doesn't try to disguise this fact, though. That database is accessed by some search engines as a way of determining "importance", competing with Google's PageRank, although as I've argued in other threads there's a real problem of sampling bias with such a method.
I don't have the Alexa Toolbar installed and wouldn't, for what it's worth. Nor do I have the "voting" option in the Google toolbar activated. This isn't because I'm visiting illegal sites - I just object to the practice in principle and I object to the uses Alexa makes of its database because of its inherent flaws from the viewpoint of sampling theory.
11-29-2003, 10:15 AM
The Alexa toolbar gives you some cool stats, but from what I see it is nothing that is not also available on their site.
So if it just boils down to funcionality, I like the google toolbar I'm using. Google deskbar is awesome too.