How Hot is Click Fraud?

It’s amazing just how heated of a subject “click fraud” is. When I published details of my conversation with Google, I made no attempt to cover both sides of the story. Long time readers will know that I’ve never believed the hype surrounding click fraud numbers, but they’ll also know that I’m balanced in my coverage.

However, with this article, I felt a balanced report would simply be that, a balanced commentary with no room for conversation. So instead, I kept it one-sided and let the community provide the balance – and boy did they.

So, what were the stats on the post?

5,000+ visitors more than the average day (3,000+ from Digg, ~300 from Techmeme)

50+ links

BlogKits Launches With AdSense Alternative for Bloggers

BlogKits.com has launched with a service that appears to be similar to John Battelle’s FM Publishing, except it focuses on the smaller blog site.

Believing that lower-traffic bloggers were getting a raw-deal by using Google’s AdSense, BlogKits creator Jim Kukral wanted to develop an ad network that would bring big name advertisers to small-name bloggers.

Hoping to make the process of monetizing your blog’s traffic easier, BlogKits promises a simple sign-up process.

  1. Select the style of advertisement to display on your blog.
  2. Decide on the type of advertisers that best match your blog’s content.
  3. Er, actually, that’s it. Upload the code and BlogKits handles the rest.

According to the official press release, initial advertisers include eBay, PayPal, Travelocity, 1&1 Internet Hosting, Cooking.com, USAToday, Staples, Sony, Priceline.com, Hotels.com, Kodak, GoDaddy, Starbucks, Discover Card, Edmunds.com and many more.

Channel Sponsors

Google Helping YouTube Avoid Litigation

Business 2.0 explains why the expected influx of law suits against YouTube, with its acquisition by Google, never materialized. Instead, Google helped bring credibility to the video sharing site and discovered ways to work with the big TV networks.

For example, take a look at the deal struck with CBS.

As part of the deal, CBS agreed to offer free video clips for downloading. In return, the media company gets to sniff around YouTube for any content bearing its copyright. CBS can then choose between removing the offending clips or getting a cut of the revenue YouTube generates from any advertising linked to the clip.

That’s brilliant! YouTube gets sanctioned clips from CBS and in return CBS gets to decide if a video clip should be pulled or if it will help them generate buzz and/or money.

Search Engine Land Leaves Pre-Alpha

After much teasing, Search Engine Land finally delivers the goods and launches with a new look.

Danny Sullivan takes the time to explain the reason behind the name – if I had know he was having that much trouble finding a good domain name, I would have given him SearchEnginePulse.com – and also gives us a tour of the new site.

Apparently they’re working on a new comment system, which is good ‘cos there’s no way I am commenting if I have to go thru that Typekey registration process. We’ll also see if they’re accepting trackbacks/pingbacks with this post.

Google Copies Yahoo, Yahoo Copies Google

More fun than watching readers complain that my article on Google’s click-fraud was straight from their PR department, is watching Yahoo accuse Google of copying, then watching Google making the same accusation.

First, Yahoo’s Jeremy Zawodny points out how Google copied Yahoo’s promo page for Internet Explorer 7.

Then, Google’s Matt Cutts suggests those in photoshop-houses shouldn’t throw stones.

Meanwhile, I’ve not seen anyone suggesting IE 7 is simply copying Firefox. ;-)

Exclusive: Google’s Click Fraud Rate is Less than 2%


Digg!

UPDATE: Ghosemajumder has clarified that my assumptions of less than 2% should be based on “invalid clicks”, which means the actual number is more likely just a fraction of one percent!

New York Times Joins List of Digg Spammers

If we’re to believe the tripe fed to us by CNET recently, we’d have to add the New York Times to the list of “spammers” and “scammers” out to game Digg. Why?

TechCrunch reports that the NYT has added social bookmark links to many of its stories, including links to Digg, Facebook and Newsvine.

This seems like a begrudging move for The Times, a paper with an elitist reputation and a crossword puzzle that you need a PhD to solve. A social networking site like Facebook doesn’t seem the type of company that The Times would consort with but getting into social news sharing is just good business these days.

Does this mean that social bookmarking has jumped the shark? How can it be trendy and cutting edge, if even the NYT is in on the act?