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FedEx Will Pay You $5 To Install Flash (theregister.co.uk) 90

FedEx's Office Print department is offering customers $5 to enable Adobe Flash in their browsers. Why would they do such a thing you may ask? It's because they want customers to design posters, signs, manuals, banners and promotional agents using their "web-based config-o-tronic widgets," which requires Adobe Flash. The Register reports: But the web-based config-o-tronic widgets that let you whip and order those masterpieces requires Adobe Flash, the enemy of anyone interested in security and browser stability. And by anyone we mean Google, which with Chrome 56 will only load Flash if users say they want to use it, and Microsoft which will stop supporting Flash in its Edge browser when the Windows 10 Creators Update debuts. Mozilla's Firefox will still run Flash, but not for long. The impact of all that Flash hate is clearly that people are showing up at FedEx Office Print without the putrid plug-in. But seeing as they can't use the service without it, FedEx has to make the offer depicted above or visible online here. That page offers a link to download Flash, which is both a good and a bad idea. The good is that the link goes to the latest version of Flash, which includes years' worth of bug fixes. The bad is that Flash has needed bug fixes for years and a steady drip of newly-detected problems means there's no guarantee the software's woes have ended. Scoring yourself a $5 discount could therefore cost you plenty in future.
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FedEx Will Pay You $5 To Install Flash

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Tell you what, I'll pay them $5.00 USD to use HTML5 instead of flash. Or I'll just use their paper forms. Ain't no way I'm installing flash on any computer I control.

    • Re:Not flash. No. (Score:4, Informative)

      by ShanghaiBill ( 739463 ) on Friday March 24, 2017 @06:56PM (#54105859)

      The Html5 canvas has been widely available since 2006, and FedEx is a $50B/yr company. Why would it take them more than a decade to update a legacy app to a modern platform? Instead of paying their customers to install malware, they should hire some competent developers.

      • by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 24, 2017 @08:10PM (#54106137)

        Instead of paying their customers

        They aren't paying you anything. Giving you a $5 discount off money you haven't spent yet is not the same as "paying you $5". If people actually fall for this scam, it saves FedEx a lot of money (they don't have to pay someone to write a non-flash app) and costs them exactly nothing.

      • by Raenex ( 947668 )

        The Html5 canvas has been widely available since 2006

        Is it more secure, or did they just move the bugs normally found in Flash to an even deeper level within the browser that can't be disabled trivially?

        • htlm5 canvas is part of the web browser, so it's inherently as strong as the weakest link in the chain - and it sucks up WAY more cpu than flash ever did. Short answer - you're fscked either way.
        • Sorry it can't run on IE 6/8. Ain't gonna happen and welcome to the life of web developers?

          If 40% of your customers use ancient 8 year old browsers you don't say no to money!

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by krigat ( 1253674 )
        The reason is simple: FedEx is not an "Internet company". It's old school offline business, and those companies often have managers/deciders in their 50s or 60s that grew up without Internet, and thus have still no idea how it works. They think in decades, and forget that a decade in online business is like a century in old school business. To line it up: the managers at FedEx who decided about the Flash campaign probably think they are super modern, because 10 years ago they had read that Flash is a cool
      • Have you ever used any Fed Ex software?
        Their Ship Manager software takes longer to load than the competitors (big brown truck) ship software.
        Their update process for the software is terrible.
        Even the web based version leaves a lot to be desired.
        Doubtful they will ever hire competent developers given the state of the ship software.
        Glad we do a majority of our shipping with the other guys.

      • Thank Internet Explorer. Many customers still use IE from last decade so HTML 5 is a no go and too scary.

        What do you want to make a bet FedEx still uses IE 8 and can't even get a green light from their IT department yet?

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Only bad evil luddites use Flash.
      Good appy app apps use HTML5.

  • Still $100 too expensive.

    • by msauve ( 701917 ) on Friday March 24, 2017 @07:48PM (#54106059)
      Heck, it should be easy to automate spinning up VM's, installing flash on a few different browsers in each, then collecting $5 for each. I'm guessing way more than $100 is possible.
      • I'm guessing way more than $100 is possible.

        Read TFA before you spend much time on that project. Blame goes to the clickbait headline, but still.

      • FedEx will not give you $5, you just get a discount of $5 on an order over $30.

        From the FedEx website [fedex.com]:

        We apologize for the inconvenience, but it looks like your browser no longer supports Flash®.
        In order to enable Flash and continue with your FedEx Office® print purchase, please update your browser using the simple steps provided below.

        As a thank you for your patience and for being a valued FedEx Office customer, please use “FLA726” at checkout to receive $5 off on orders over $30*.
        *See Terms and Conditions

        So, you will be "collecting" nothing, no matter how many virtual machines you use.

        • by msauve ( 701917 )
          Blame BeauHD (the new Timothy), not me. I responded to the claim ("FedEx Will Pay You $5 To Install Flash")

          I know that many don't read the articles, or even the complete summaries. But when an "editor" posts an inaccurate headline, it's on them, not me. They get paid for posting, the rest of us don't.
          • I am not blaming you at all, I was just informing you about the sensationalist spin-doctored headline.
            If anybody is to blame about that, it is The Register [theregister.co.uk].
            Cheers!
  • by ZorinLynx ( 31751 ) on Friday March 24, 2017 @06:44PM (#54105777) Homepage

    I said that a few months ago. I never figured someone would actually attempt to do so.

    And yes it still applies.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    LibreOffice and GIMP are free. Sounds like they want free designers. Anything you make on their site becomes FedEx property.

  • by _xeno_ ( 155264 ) on Friday March 24, 2017 @06:51PM (#54105821) Homepage Journal

    Every other month it seems, we get an urgent notice from IT reminding us to either uninstall or update Flash.

    Unfortunately, I have to have Flash installed on my work computers because the corporate-required "training" courses that they keep on making us take require Flash - such as the one on "information security" about how important it is to keep our software up to date.

    So, basically, I have to have Flash installed so I can tick off a little checkbox that says I know not to install software like Flash.

    • I think irony is not a strong enough word for your situation. May I suggest a new stronger word, perhaps? How about titaniumy?

      • I was going to say "rain", but "titanium on your wedding day" might also work. Although, then somebody might think you're talking about the rings. So how about acid: "Acid rain on your wedding day". That sounds unpleasant, and very ironic, don't you think?

    • > keep on making us take require Flash - such as the one on "information security" ...
      > I have to have Flash installed so I can tick off a little checkbox that says I know not to install software like Flash.

      That reminds me of a certain network security company. They have all of their employees take annual security training, provided by a third-party. In order to keep track of who has done the training, employees log in to the third-party site using their Active Directory credentials - the same cred

  • Surely it would be cheaper to get some student somewhere to slap together a HTML version.

    • Getting a student somewhere to slap something together is how they are here in the first place.

      • Getting a student somewhere to slap something together is how they are here in the first place.

        Oh no, I doubt that very much. I would bet actual money that they paid someone a lot to put together an obsolete solution.

  • Pay you? That's Bulls... I mean Fake News. They will give you an imaginary $5 "discount" on something that they completely control the price of. They will not pay you anything, just pretend that you are saving some money off of a high priced service.
  • FedEx use that money and pay some developer to rewrite that crap.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      FedEx use that money and pay some developer to rewrite that crap.

      I don't know many developers who would be willing to get paid in $5 off coupons for use of a program that is so bad they are being paid in coupons just to rewrite it from scratch.

      That's sorta like paying someone a bag of garbage in exchange for taking out your trash.

      • FedEx use that money and pay some developer to rewrite that crap.

        I don't know many developers who would be willing to get paid in $5 off coupons for use of a program that is so bad they are being paid in coupons just to rewrite it from scratch.

        That's sorta like paying someone a bag of garbage in exchange for taking out your trash.

        I know I'm being trolled, but don't be a tard. Of course FedEx has budgeted a certain amount of money for this.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Sorry, no developers available to do the needful. This week it's Diwali, or some other week-long celebration in India when nobody goes to work, that outsourcing firms forget to mention when convincing companies to send all their jobs overseas...

      Fedex outsources and uses H-1Bs, employing the standard tricks, many of their job postings have requirements nobody can possibly meet. Look at developer postings for Fedex and you'll find most of them require years of experience with something called "Fedex Developer

  • Why don't they just pay their web developers to develop an app in a more secure environment than Flash? Geesh, take about short-sighted corporate policies.
    • You mean one that doesn't run in a web browser or on a phone that no longer gets updates (that's most phones)? Web developers are shit at security.
  • by whoever57 ( 658626 ) on Friday March 24, 2017 @06:59PM (#54105883) Journal
    FedEx is not paying anyone to install flash. Instead, they are offering a $5 discount. There is a huge difference.
  • Ironically The Register article linked to has content (presumably ads) using Flash so you get an "Do you want to enable flash" popup.
  • So if I enable flash in ma Edge, Opera, Opera Neon, Chrome, ... I get 20 bucks or more and I can continue to use Firefox without it?

    Sweet!

  • Been running a flash blocker for years now and I'm perfectly happy with it. If I run across flash I wanna let run I can right click on it and jump through hoops. Happens maybe once a week. Beats having flash fuck me a couple times a day.
  • I wonder what Adobe thinks about other companies offering discounts to install their software.

    • I think they should question why their high end expensive software & solution providers & developers couldn't make a major customer move to HTML5 as advertised. They couldn't even move to Air which should work.

  • No, not getting people to install Flash, that's just stupid.

    But the "design at home" small business or individual printing market. If you don't want to have people install shit, you need to make a WYSIWYG in-browser editor that can produce pixel perfect, color accurate content using stuff such as arbitrary custom fonts.

    Doable? Yes. But the compromises are interesting. I used to work for a big company where we did this. Our competitors were using stuff like Flash, limited templates, sticking to built in font

  • Market value for a malware like Flash: -5 USD
  • I seem to remember Apple getting mauled in the media for refusing to allow flash on their new iPhone platform
    So much so that Jobs wrote a open public letter to explain his reasons:
    Thoughts on Flash [apple.com] Steve Jobs - April, 2010
    In the context of the time, it was both brave (yes, I said it) and correct.
    Why is anyone still hanging onto this legacy of a bygone technology era?

  • Can't they convert their app to Adobe Air self contained "application"? It even works on Android tablets & phones that way.

    That is what Oracle suggests to developers relying on embedded Java in web pages, move to Webstart.

  • i will pay fedex $5 one time in the name of sapient retards to use ancient html 5 tek
  • I might do it for $500. Might.

  • Well, they made their decision, and I made mine.
  • Do the graphics in pstricks, then foo.tex -> foo.dvi _> foo.ps -> foo.pdf.

I find you lack of faith in the forth dithturbing. - Darse ("Darth") Vader

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