Is it fair that other companies can install unrequested plugins to Firefox? It is happening right now, and there is not a lot we can do about it. Asa Dotzler brought this topic up in one of his most recent blog posts and I do think it is an interesting debate. The three big tech giants out there find it ok to add things to Firefox without asking me first. Google does it. Microsoft does it. Even Apple does it.
Here is meat and potatoes of the complaint from Asa’s post:
Why do Microsoft, Google, Apple, and others think that it is an OK practice to add plug-ins to Firefox when I’m installing their software packages. When I installed iTunes, in order to manage my music collection and sync to my iPod, why did Apple think it was OK to add the iTunes Application Detector plug-in to my Firefox web browser without asking me? Why did Microsoft think it was OK to sneak their Windows Live Photo Gallery or Office Live Plug-in for Firefox into my browser (presumably) when I installed Microsoft Office? What makes Google think it’s reasonable behavior for them to slip a Google Update plug-in into Firefox when I installed Google Earth or Google Chrome (not sure which one caused this) without asking me first?
I have to agree with him, I do not think this is an ok behavior at all. When installing any type of software to Firefox or to my computer in general – companies should be open and honest when doing so. Make sure people know what they are getting and well, they shouldn’t be evil. When you stop and think about it, Apple, Microsoft and Google all have their own browsers now too.
What is to stop them from doing something bad with their Firefox plugins to make themselves look better?