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Checking competitor stats.

Morally wrong?

     
12:30 pm on Sep 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

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The leading competitor in my field has left his stats open to view in www.example.com/stats. I have been through their stats with a fine toothcomb found keywords I never thought about and lots of new ideas. As itís a really good informational site that lots of hard work has gone into. I am starting to feel slightly guilty.

Its to late now but would anyone have resisted did I do wrong?

12:34 pm on Sept 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I actively search for my competitors stats files i'm afraid.

I wouldn't worry about it, if they leave them out to be seen, than you are entitled to look. :)

12:37 pm on Sept 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

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It's all part of the game. If they were that worried, they'd have them locked down.

2odd...

12:38 pm on Sept 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I agree anything publicly available is to be viewed, if they are as easily viewed as you suggest then the SE's will have picked up on them also.

-gs

12:52 pm on Sept 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

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no! if they leave em open, bad luck. Sloppy webmastering.
2:04 pm on Sept 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

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maybe those stats are a decoy </devil>
3:06 pm on Sept 12, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I think it is your moral obligation to contact your competitor and tell him that his stats are exposed. Then you should teach him how to protect them. And since you looked as his, you need to show him yours.
9:48 pm on Sept 13, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I really don't see this as a moral issue as long as the means you used to access the info was aboveboard, merely having the information doesn't mean you can put it to good use, that depends on your skill. If it would make you feel better, you might alert him to the situation but it seems unlikely that he is not aware of it. I see no reason to show him yours, there are some advantages in knowing how to protect your stuff. If we can't learn from our competitors, good or bad, we will all have to reinvent the wheel every time.