War? I beg to differ.
It's not a war, it's a slaughter. And rightfully so. As a web developer I can do so much cool stuff with IE, and very little with any other browser. I can make full fledged web based applications with controls bound to data sources and functional stuff that can run totally client side. I could restrict myself to pretty little pages that are rendered totally server side and have a bit of functionality, but not much, or I could make these really cool applications. This is the problem with people like you (the author) and the people who agree with him (or her). Anything microsoft comes out with, you will automatically hate, in fact you will have to hate it by virtue of the fact that it's created by MS. I hate all the stupid politics behind this argument and arguments like these. Most people couldn't care less if IE just threw away all the standards that they do still adhere to, and make their own internet with their own protocols and standards and whatnot. The coolest product is the one that people are going to want to use. And the coolest browser around right now is IE. F$$$ companies and groups that can't keep up. F%%% the organizations that make the standards. IE is damned cool, and the web is far more functional because of it.
Wake up and smell the coffee kids. There are few people who actually care about the points you bring up, and most of them are people who don't really matter too much at the end of the day. Right now IE is the best. People will therefore use IE, and any web-designer with an ounce of common sense will write apps that take advantage of the cool stuff you can do with IE. That's how the world works because it makes sense. If you want to live in the dark ages then fine, but one day you'll get off your high horse and buy a car. Or you'll fade away. These arguments are getting so damned tiresome. One day people will realize that MS is huge because they're damned good at what they do. To all your programmers who want to write a browser that anyone will use, Copy Microsoft. Sure, make it Open Source so at the end of the day you can sleep easy, but take the browser that is doing everything right, and copy that.
Don't write me an email saying my sites look bad in netscape or mozilla or whatever you use. I couldn't care less.
Not all ASP's work like Yahoo! does.
Your article seems to lump all ASP's products into the same category as Yahoo's email service. Yahoo mail and a lot of other web based applications are simply forms. Forms from which you select a command, click go, and then your command is sent back to the server and a new form is served up to you. That isn't the way every ASP offers its services. I currently work for a company that's looking to act as an application service provider for small to medium sized businesses. This isn't a pitch, so I'm not going to discuss the actual applications.
The way these apps work though, is totally different, and goes against most of your main points. Our company isn't the only company doing things in such a manner (although it'd be sweet for us if we were). Our apps are smart. Data is stored in multiple persistant data stores on the client, and merged with the data on the server only when the user goes online. Applications can run on a client's computer for days without the user ever connecting to the internet. Latency and performance are no longer real issues, as even when the user is connected, they just queue up their requests and the server can handle them when it gets around to it. And while the requests are queued the application still works. These applications are fast, tiny (thanks to htc's) and they don't have latency, availablity, or performance problems.
Your arguments that a user shouldn't use an ASP because of data lock-in, privacy and security are silly, because they are company specific, and are different from ASP to ASP. A companies security and privacy policies should affect a customer's choice whether to go with that company, not whether to go with the type of product that company sells. Microsoft Windows 95 has very weak security policies, but you're not hearing anyone say "Don't use Operating Systems!".
Your comments and criticisms are about one specific service that you are frustrated with, not the concept of an application service provider. It's unfortunate that some people may read your article and think that these shortcomings affect every ASP around.
This article was very poorly researched. I strongly suggest it be renamed "Reasons not to use Yahoo! Webmail and other very similar applications", because a lot of ASP's have gone out of their way to address every single point you raised.