Subject: Is M$ a perpetrator of attractive nuisances?
From: "Stephen J. Turnbull" <turnbull@sk.tsukuba.ac.jp>
Date: Mon, 8 May 2000 02:33:16 +0900 (JST)

>>>>> "Rich" == Rich Morin <rdm@cfcl.com> writes:

    Rich> I have been musing about the notion of "attractive
    Rich> nuisances", wondering whether it might apply to a company
    Rich> which has shown itself to be totally disinterested in the
    Rich> possibility that its products can be subverted and abused.

    Rich> I refer, of course, to M$, whose operating systems have
    Rich> ever-increasing opportunities for misuse:

    Rich>    Start with a complete lack of internal firewalls.
    Rich>    Add in Visual Basic as a pervasive macro language.
    Rich>    Add Outlook's automagical running of apps and scripts.

I think you would be hard put to show that MS is totally (or at all)
disinterested.

Also, in general attractive nuisances are nuisances; whereas lack of
security features is a convenience for the client.  Thus, you could
probably sue MSFT _customers_ for harboring the attractive nuisance,
which then resulted somehow in damage to third parties.  And you might
even have to succeed before you could successfully argue that it's
MS's fault.  OTOH, damage to the direct customer would probably have
to be redressed as a tort, not via the attractive nuisance idea.


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