SourceForge, the online source code repository, recently faced backlash for bundling adware with free and open-source software downloads. Following the criticism, it posted a blog post on June 8 to provide insight into how it intends to generate ad revenue in the future.
The website backtracked a bit in addressing the adware bundling that has left many people feeling unsettled in using its resources. SourceForge claimed that it was a test to see how palatable these types of ads would be among its users, according to MaximumPC. The site also confirmed using the Windows version of the GNU Image Manipulation Program, or GIMP, during its test.
In light of the controversy, GIMP published its own blog posts on the matter, condemning SourceForge for its behavior.
“To us, this firmly places SourceForge among the dodgy crowd of download sites,” GIMP stated. “SourceForge are abusing the trust that we and our users had put into their service in the past. We don’t believe that this is a fixable situation.”
Although GIMP is now coming out with this negative reaction, SourceForge notes that the GIMP-Win author stopped using SourceForge back in 2013. In short, the entire partnership between the two was abandoned long ago.
Looking ahead, SourceForge claims that it will continue to facilitate feedback, and it is encouraging users to share their opinions on the SourceForge forum. It also confirmed that it has discontinued its ad test following “tremendous concern among community members.”
SourceForge acknowledged that it received complaints about its ad quality last year. It has since developed a program to remove ads that mimic user interface elements or show malice, and it asks users to be patient during the removal process. At the same time, the site also reiterated its dedication to advertising.
“SourceForge is and has always been a business endeavor,” it stated. “From the early days, one of our primary sources of revenue has been advertising.”