I agree with you perfectly, s4. Can you imagine someone who has only heard of ASPs recently and suddenly reads an article like this? You'd think that all ASPs are crooks and that ASP technology is doomed. It's just too Naderish. You can't judge all ASPs like that. Mr. Reiber, you still haven't answered my question: "What other ASP have you used before besides Yahoo!?". Mind you that I don't even consider Yahoo! as a real ASP.
Another Point of View
Sorry Mr. Reiber, but your editorial sounds more like a complaint toward your e-mail service with Yahoo!. I do agree with you on some of the ASP downsides you pointed out, but what about the downsides of locally running applications? What are the pros and cons of using an ASP and having locally running applications?
I used to work for a big Taiwanese business group before setting up my own company in the US. This business group has been running ERP over the internet ever since 1996, way before the term ASP appeared. You see, their suppliers just didn't have or didn't want to spend the money required to run ERP software so the only solution was to "host" the applications for them. Ok, before I run off on a tangent here, let me put in some counterpoints on Mr. Reiber's 6 reasons to stay away from an ASP.
Important note: Mr. Reiber has left out a very important note which concerns the costs and headaches associated with running your applications locally. Sure, there are very low cost solutions for simple e-mail, but what if someone wants a complete suite like MS Exchange? Anyone who has ever calculated the costs and headaches associated with setting up an inhouse Exchange server knows what I am talking about.
Ok, now to Mr. Reiber's list:
1. Latency. Yes, there will always be latency issues when dealing with the internet, just keep in mind that what you save by using an ASP will allow you to get several T1 lines if you wanted.
2. Availability. Refer to the T1 lines in number 1. A good ASP will also have connections to several different internet backbone.
3. Data lock-in. Ever hear of encrypted data replication?
4. Performance. I don't know about other ASPs, but when our lines reach 50% capacity at peak hours, we're already ordering more bandwidth.
5. Security. Encrypt your data. Always! Do you really think that if you set up a local e-mail system that you'll be safe from hackers? Think again...
6. Privacy. Anonymity. I don't know about other ASPs, but we certainly do not email advertisements to paying customers. Heck, we don't even have advertisements on our web site. I associate ASP with doing business. If you want to remain anonymous and do business.... need I say more?
Conclusion: Mr. Reiber, it seems to me that your idea of ASP is web-based e-mail services. What other ASP services have you used in the past? Please! If you want to write about ASPs or any other subjects, please do your homework first. For someone who has 20 years dealing with internet technologies, I'm really shocked by the lack of views in this editorial.
Have a nice day!