Unity, what can I say but this, WTF are you guys thinking???
For those of you that don't know, Unity is one of many game engines out there that games are built upon. I am sure you have heard of games like Cities: Skylines, or even Rust. Both of those games are built using the Unity engine. Now, the company they acquired and is merging in with is ironSource. "If you don't know ironSource," Unity's statement reads, "they bring a proven record of helping creators focus on what creators do best – bringing great apps and user experiences to life – while enabling business expansion in the app economy.".
IronSource is an ad tech company that is also known for doing a lot of super super super shady stuff. They are logged in a good deal of malware tracking sites for various stuff they created, as well as crating clickjacking stuff. One of the most famous examples would be, in 2015, it was at the center of a Bing advertisements controversy where a fake ad for Google Chrome drove Bing users to download a piece of software that installed on their machine and began displaying unwanted advertisements. The program was called InstallCore, and it was IronSource's "flagship product.".
Now, you may wonder why this is important and why I would post this. It's simple. Unity's CEO, John Riccitiello, made a comment in a recent interview where he was asked about the merger, and then embedding monetization indicators into the engine, which in turn would implement monetization earlier in the process of development, and his response was,
It’s a very small portion of the gaming industry that works that way, and some of these people are my favorite people in the world to fight with – they’re the most beautiful and pure, brilliant people. They’re also some of the biggest fucking idiots.
Bryant Francis I think said it best,
It's an unsettling comment, even when put in context. There are obviously plenty of developers who would love to make games without considering monetization, but Riccitiello's words seem to most apply to the world of mobile free-to-play games.
Even though this looks mostly geared towards the F2P mobile games, there are some devs that are not really trusting that this won't make it into the PC and console, and hoping that it wouldn't be forced upon them.
Well, it just seems like Unity is just looking at making more money after they got paid for the license use of their engine. No matter how they spin it, they are merging with a company that is known for malware. They tried in another interview to say that,
We are seeing developers talking negatively about IronSource’s involvement in malware campaigns or being behind malware spreading, referencing old articles about a historical desktop activity that was deprecated and spun off several years ago,
Then went on to say;
Like any large-scale desktop advertising platform, despite monitoring and enforcement, the desktop platform occasionally suffered from 'bad actors' who tried to abuse the platform.
IronSource has long focused on developing products for mobile game and app developers and doesn’t operate any desktop software distribution platforms today.
All I have to say to that is, Yes, in the PAST, you were caught doing shady shit, and it's funny that they are trying to play it off as it was a very long time ago. They shut down InstallCore in 2020, that was 2 years ago. It went on for 5 years, seriously, you think shutting it down for at most, 2 years, makes it alright. Also, the company was founded in 2010, in 2015, is when they started that InstallCore malware, and ran it for 5 years. Not including the flash malware and the other malware they created. So for about half of the companies' history, they were doing shady shit, and this is the later half of its existence. Also, blame it on 'bad actors' is a cop-out, plain and simple. It was allowed for 5 years.
Overall, I don't trust any company for they are never your friend, they really don't care about you, they are about making money, but, when they get caught and called out and do nothing, they have to deal with the rep they get and will keep. Gets me thinking back to my H1Z1 days, when I was on a PvP survival server, and we ran into a hacking group trying to raid us, (they were upset that we raided them earlier). Well, this leader of theirs ended up getting herself banned with the members of her group, and once banned, ran to the Reddit page crying that she was unjustly banned, and she didn't hack, it was only a few of her members. Well, Daybreak responded saying that she is just as guilty of hacking as the ones that were actually hacking, for she knew they were hacking, and allowing them to cheat because it benefited her and her group. Overall, ironSource cop-out is just as lame as hers.