In this report, Edelman looks at five P2P applications: eDonkey, iMesh, Kazaa, LimeWire, and Morpheus. In particular, Edelman looks at the end user license agreements and the add-on applications that accompany each program.
Some of Edelman's conclusions:
The report includes tables, screenshots, and details on each P2P application that are well worth checking out.
Although each P2P installer included at least a vague reference to each program to be installed, certain P2P programs' installation procedures nonetheless present cause for concern. For one, substantive disclosures are generally detailed only in license agreements presented in scroll boxes -- often squeezing thousands of words of text into small windows requiring dozens of page-downs to view in full. . . .
Some installers fail to provide even general information about the programs to be installed. For example, the eDonkey installer offers users New.net without stating the general purpose of New.net software and without disclosing any effects of accepting the installation. Other installers describe selected general effects but fail to prominently mention other effects likely of interest to most users. For example, when Kazaa installs Claria, the Kazaa installer prominently mentions Claria's advertisements but does not prominently mention transmission of user activities to a Claria "decision support" database (reportedly the seventh-largest in the world).
Edelman has done similar reports in the past, including a report on Grokster and a report on 180solutions.
Hat tip: Slashdot.