View Poll Results: scumware/thiefware/parasiteware - Cost to you?

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  • nothing

    2 4.76%
  • under 10%

    5 11.90%
  • 10-30%

    14 33.33%
  • 30-50%

    12 28.57%
  • Greater than 50%

    9 21.43%
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  1. #1
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    This is a simple question:

    In terms of percentage of sales lost, what do you estimate parasiteware costs YOU?

  2. #2
    15 years and counting
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    This is NOT a simple question.
    It's pretty hard to answer, I just don't really know how much. With my 5 years history, I can tell my sales are dropping when new scumlords come on board. It's obvious with amazon, Zappos, Fredrick's because I still have a high level of sales and I can follow the up and down easily. I've seen a sudden drop in my EPC for TigerDirect, A.K.A. Gourmet, Bonsay boy, Fragrance.net, JC Whitney... lately from 20 to 30%
    Overall, I will not be astonished to loose around 50% of my income.

    It's not the big that eat the small... it's the fast that eat the slow. Jennings & Haughton

  3. #3
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Zeus I'm following my own stats on 300+ merchants when the parasites are in full swing. My top 10 always seem to spiral downward with the ABW board uncovering thievery. There seems to be a corrilation between the amount of PPC SE keyword activity for various merchants and the impact of a parasite attaching to those keywords. It's like they are tipped to target programs that convert. You'd think that the AMs would pickup on the how their clicks stay at the same level but a few Dupers start taking in 20-30% of all sales. The idiots think those Duper/parasites are super salesmen when in rality they are monitizing the normally free traffic.

    WebMaster Mike

  4. #4
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    I don't think a great percentage of my earnings are disappearing to these places. I remember when the first one showed up (TopText I think it was) it made no noticable difference in my CR.

    Since then I've watched my CR whenever a new parasite showed up and there have been slight-to-no differences with all the other parasites too. Morpheus may be nicking a very small percentage but nothing much. Maybe my strongly NONentertaining sites just don't motivate the types that are parasiteware users to stay around in the first place so they weren't buying anything before Morph either...

    I just checked my "web site performance" for this year and last year and it's showing a drop of 1 TENTH of a percent in the Conversion Ratio. I don't believe that's a statistically significant amount and I certainly can't pinpoint the cause to any one thing. Between this year and last year I have different merchants, different products, and a different way of promotion. So anything could be the cause of it.

    All I can conclude is that parasiteware users never liked my sites anyway because the presence of parasiteware doesn't seem to be affecting my performance in any significant way (which would mean I didn't get orders from those people before parasiteware either!). If there's a flea somewhere on the body of my sites I can't find it.

    As for their seemingly huge amounts of users I don't really care about those figures for this reason: A lot of people will download crap, decide it's a pain because of some aggravation the crap does, and disable or uninstall it. Of course Morpheus is never going to count the uninstalls and disabled BHOs, they will only advertise the amount of downloads! So it seems like all of these places have huge amounts of active users but the reality is that a great majority of those "downloads" may become "uninstalls" very quickly.

    The PRINCIPLE of parasiteware sucks of course, but when it comes to actual effects I haven't seen any money missing from the vault. I voted "under 10%" though, because it's probable that they have nicked a few sales.

    My contrarian 2c.

    There is no knowledge that is not power.~~Ralph Waldo Emerson

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador mousejockey's Avatar
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    Although I feel strongly about parasiteware
    I have to agree with Leader.

    My sites have continued to grow even though in the past year we've gone through the various parasitewares, Ezula, Surf, Toptext, whatever
    and now Morpheus.

    It's quite possibly because my sites are also
    not attractive to Morpheus users.

    "I haven't failed, I've just found 10,000 reasons why it doesn't work"
    Thomas Edison

  6. #6
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    Well the last Morpheus go around with the C. BHO detection script Morpheus Penetration

    It was roughly 4% of traffic, so with the internet growing lets say 6% percent.

    It's not a huge number, and to be honest I had my best two weeks at the end of August, and I'm at my all time high now. But Some merchants on the list have went down quite a bit, but have compensated in others, evening the playing field.

    But it's a matter of principle to me, not a matter of dollar lines. Because some day, there may be one that will be way more drastic on the dollars. So I'm going to treat Morpheus as If it was hurting my bottom line. I feel we have to make an example out of one, in order for others not to follow. But this is my opinion.

    ------------------------------------------------------------Minds are like parachutes - they only function when open. Thomas Dewar

  7. #7
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    Its not affecting me greatly. I only had one merchant on the idiot list and they just got an ultimatum.

    I used to have more, but I dropped them first time round and never remembered to put them back. Seeing as how I'm busy with real merchants.

    Actually there *was* JC Whitney, but seeing as Rick's so mad about it, he doesn't count.


    I

  8. #8
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    I'm having my best month and week so far, however I've been very hard-hit on merchants on the list, esp Tiger and JC Whitney since the last week in August. Went from 25 cents per click in August to 3 cents per click in September for Tiger. Looks like I won't even get a check from Tiger this month. The others - Magellan has all but dried up as has Zappos.

    As for the merchants not on the Morpheus list? Did I mention I'm having my best month/week since starting AM? And it's all coming from NON-Morpheus affiliated merchants.

    {

    "Laziness, Impatience, Hubris. Pick any three" ~ YAPC 19100

  9. #9
    15 years and counting
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    I'm driving part of my traffic thru music downloads, as BlueX said, the % lost to parasite ware must be much more important for these customers.
    I've also web sites dedicated to home decoration, gardening... I remember I used to do a killing selling flowers. My top performer was 1-800-flowers, my sales dropped as soon as they started their association with scumware. I god rid of them but lost most of my sales for flowers even after replacing them with other merchants.
    So, even if I agree with you concerning the direct lost, (much lower) we are still loosing much more because we have to work more than we should just to replace the merchants associated with thieves.

    By the way, replacing merchants, could be a blessing, I'm doing better month after month.

    It's not the big that eat the small... it's the fast that eat the slow. Jennings & Haughton

  10. #10
    ABW Adviser Panel Dynamoo's Avatar
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    Maybe 1% of my visitors have the Morpheus BHO installed.. BUT in the organisation I work for I'd guess that around 10% have Gator.. it's difficult to be accurate, but Gator in particular seems to have significant market penetration.

    Меня зовут Динаму

  11. #11
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    I'm down 20% for the month, last month down 2% month on month. If this has anything to do with Morpheus?

  12. #12
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    Hi Everyone! I am the affiliate manager at A.K.A. Gourmet. I was just made aware of this parasiteware issue. Frankly, I was not familiar with this happening at all! How do I stop it? I hate to see that affiliates on this forum(or any affiliates)are losing sales because of this problem. We have a great program..a honest program..that we have spend the last year and half building. We offer 12-15% commissions, 30 return days and we pay our affiliates ourselves FASTER than LS can. We pay by the 20th of the following month..not two months later..
    Anyway..if you all can help me figure out how to eliminate these parasites...that would be great!

    One thing to add..being a giftbasket/gourmet food site..cr vary throughout the year. 70% of our annual sales occur November/December. So if you are choosing affiliates based on the highest year-round CR..that is one thing..but don't pass up gourmet affiliates because you don't see strong sales in August..anyway..that is another whole conversation..
    feel free to email me at akapattya@aol.com.

  13. #13
    15 years and counting
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    As one of your affiliates akapatty I can say you have an honest program, good conversion (dropping lately with the morpheus come back), you pay on time, and you don't send nasty email to your affiliates like these people from H@rry and D@vid.
    The first thing you need to do is to drop right away Buyerport (the Morpheus shopping Portal), but there's more scumware around and I'm sure some well informed ABWers will tell you what to do for others. Good to see you here. Welcome.

    It's not the big that eat the small... it's the fast that eat the slow. Jennings & Haughton

  14. #14
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    According to the poll the answer is ~35% of commissions are lost due to parasite ware. According to hard evidence such as that done by Cedric, the answer is 4% of traffic. Does this make sense?
    ==
    Blaine

    Business Intelligence Analyst
    Commission Junction - The Largest Pay-For-Performance Ad Network
    http://www.cj.com

  15. #15
    ABW Ambassador AWaR's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> According to hard evidence such as that done by Cedric, the answer is 4% of traffic. Does this make sense?
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Indeed it does make sense, because if I remember correctly, the 4% Cedric was talking about was ONLY for the morpheus redirects.

    There are other programs out there doing exactly the same thing Buyersport were doing, which weren't being monitored at that time, but they are now [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif[/img]

    _________________________

    If it works, sell it. If it works well, sell it for more. If it doesn't work, quadruple the price and sell it as an antique.
    Rule of acquisition #80

  16. #16
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    Let me see if I have this straight. 35% of commissions are being stolen. 4% of traffic is being redirected by the morpheus BHO. To make this easier lets assume that 100% of morpheus traffic results in a commission. This means 31% of stolen commissions are left to be accounted for by stealware publishers. I am trying to come up with a list of those publishers that are stealing commissions. If you can help complete this list then please go to the following URL, add the Buyersports URL and the software that they are using to redirect tracking URLs.

    http://abw.infopop.cc/6/ubb.x?a=tpc&...431#5696029431

    Thanks,
    ==
    Blaine

    Business Intelligence Analyst
    Commission Junction - The Largest Pay-For-Performance Ad Network
    http://www.cj.com

  17. #17
    ABW Ambassador AWaR's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>... add the Buyersports URL and the software that they are using to redirect tracking URLs.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    No can do, sorry. I did say, however
    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>... the same thing Buyersport were doing <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>(past tense)

    As you can see HERE, Buyersport is (at the moment) in compliance with Linkshare's Addendum and BeFree's proposal, and therefor I'm not about to start throwing accusations around regarding them, sorry [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

    _________________________

    If it works, sell it. If it works well, sell it for more. If it doesn't work, quadruple the price and sell it as an antique.
    Rule of acquisition #80

  18. #18
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    I will add them to the list of publishers that generate commissions by overwriting URLs. As of today they may be in full compliance but the software to overwrite tracking URLs still exists. Buyersports will continue to modify tracking URLs so long as people are out their that have the stealware software installed on their operating systems.

    ==
    Blaine

    Business Intelligence Analyst
    Commission Junction - The Largest Pay-For-Performance Ad Network
    http://www.cj.com

  19. #19
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    As you can see http://abw.infopop.cc/6/ubb.x?a=tpc&...&m=2556038331, Buyersport is (at the moment) in compliance with Linkshare's Addendum and BeFree's proposal, and therefor I'm not about to start throwing accusations around regarding them, sorry [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

    _________________________


    Frankly I do not care if they are clean enough to be in compliance with the WHO International Standards For Drinking Water, I am carefully considering my options regarding this company.


    Edward

  20. #20
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    This is something that we cannot answer. The merchants (and affiliate networks) really need to track things like the number of cookie changes...and give us figures. My guess is that a good 20% of computers are infected...meaning about a 20% loss.

    The networks could figure this out, because they know who the parasites are and can pretty much guess how much they are getting. Of course, the networks have a history of calling parasites dupers and treating them to caviar and champaign.

    If I were a merchant I would put independent checks on cookie changes and figure out the percent of cash lost to parasites.

    BTW, the biggest parasite loss could really be in the form of paying commission on non commissionable sales.

    Missoula - Short Stories

  21. #21
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    What does duper mean? I have seen this term a hundred times here...

    makin' money

  22. #22
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Dupers are affiliates posing as merchants. They sell no products or services, but pay small lead commissions to dupe newbee affiliates into joining and promoting their programs. Many offer rebates -rewards -prizes -email marketing services or other "incent" type deals and need a huge user base to play a numbers racket. They monitize every single sellable part of their users information to multiple sources. They dupe their affiliates -networks and end users for a profit.

    WebMaster Mike

  23. #23
    ABW Ambassador Sam Bay's Avatar
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    OH, COME ON GUYS!

    First of all, nobody know how much money they're loosing.

    Second. What difference does it take how much they're stealing? Even if they had stolen only one sale's commission from every affiliate site, that would come out to be millions of dollars.

    Third, most of these scumwares has been instealled to closed 250 million computers. What are the odss that your users are coming from clean ones?

    Fourth, some of you say, your site is not appealing to free music downloaders. How about their parents who may use the same computer?


    On other threads, you're whining and complaining, here saying your commissions are not stolen.

    It's time to stop these scumwares, once and all.

  24. #24
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    SamBay ..I hear you loud and clear. These *#%@@( buggers have got to be put down once and for all or the affiliate marketing industry is toast. I've been in it since 1997 and my Cybermalls have been tweeked for the Holiday with hundreds of hours of work to showcase merchant offerings. I use individual product links to super buys from both non-parasite merchants and the others. My YTD and last 2 months sales are off 70% from the sale levels a year ago.

    I think CJ.com has almost complete gone to darkside by pushing their top merchant to "traffic Hijackers" as their 184 merchants on 2967 clicks produced $12.86 in revenue for me this month. Last year at the same month showed 247.00 in commissions. 90 % of my BeFree and Linkshare merchants haven't shown a single sale in 4 months on thousands of targeted click throughs. I'm begining to think the Gators-Morpheus-ShopNow -eBates wanks are targeting my Malls out of spite of all the diversion tactics.

    Those few merchants who aren't partners with these commission thieves still get cherry picked at the point of sale. I'd love to see TigerDirect and others sue them for trade infringement.

    WebMaster Mike

  25. #25
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    >>First of all, nobody know how much money they're loosing.

    Assuming the worst is not productive. This place could be blindsided by a loudly honking Mack Truck and wouldn't see it coming because it's only looking at one supposed threat! Apparently you have never heard of "shrink" as a retailing concept??

    >>Second. What difference does it take how much they're stealing? Even if they had stolen only one sale's commission from every affiliate site, that would come out to be millions of dollars.

    I ask YOU: What difference does it make what the heck it adds up to. One sale off of each site, will cost the individual affiliates more to chase after than it does to ignore it!!! It already HAS! A million pages could have been put up in the time this "issue" has been on here. But Noooo, everybody's too worried about the 2%! Or 30%, depending on who's talking. It's still the little part! But go on, DUMP the best merchants on the Net because they have one or two unsavory partners. Just leave them all to me...

    >>Third, most of these scumwares has been instealled to closed 250 million computers. What are the odss that your users are coming from clean ones?

    High, since UNinstall is also something people do...

    >>Fourth, some of you say, your site is not appealing to free music downloaders. How about their parents who may use the same computer?

    Oh get real. Teens and twentysomethings are the biggest consumers of music--just check a reputable source that caters to big business or the music industry instead of speculating affiliates. Fat chance of the parents being a major source of music STEALING.


    >>On other threads, you're whining and complaining, here saying your commissions are not stolen.

    I haven't been whining nor have I been complaining. But perhaps I should have posted more ANTI-whines like this one! "So su mi" for not having a desire to stand in the way of a stampeding herd!!!

    There is no knowledge that is not power.~~Ralph Waldo Emerson

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