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  1. #1
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    A CJ merchant has signed up as an affiliate not only of their own program, but other CJ merchants as well.They have set up a handful of extra sites to hog up SE results, and are using iframes in a popup to automatically set cookies not only for their own program, thus erasing their own affiliates existing cookies on shopper's PC's, but are also setting cookies for their competitor's CJ program, effectively screwing their competitor's affilaites, and screwing their competitor out of commissions by having a cookie set on a user's PC even as that user arrives at the competitor's site through their own organic SE listings.

    ------------------------------
    "It be's dat way sumtimes." ~ Coco B. Ware

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador phillyburbs's Avatar
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    Without specifics, I'm trying to figure out what type of merchant would do this and how. Have you addressed the issue with that merchant.

    Karl Smith >>> phillyBurbs - Your Internet Starts Here
    ---------
    Beware Parasiteware! It is stealing your money! >>> click here to learn more

  3. #3
    Ad Network Rep ToddCrawford's Avatar
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    If this is true, please provide me with more details so we can put a stop to it. It cannot get resolved unless you point out the problem.

    You can send this to me as a PM if you like.

    Todd Crawford
    Commission Junction

  4. #4
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Chief please give Todd the info on these shady merchants. This has become a very popular cookie stuffing trick by affiliates and the merchants are using it too. What's scary is a sleezebag SEO/SEM firm can group hundreds of merchants merchants in various verticles and cookie cannon the SERPs.

    Todd what is so hard for pro-active CJ to just make a policy that no affiliate/merchant/Duper can set a sales tracking cookie without a physical click. Certainly CJ has to require some real value by any party to earn the right to a commission or outright theft will become the rule of the jungle.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  5. #5
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    PM sent but I really won't expect much from CJ.

    I'm more interested in seeing what Neil plans to do about it.

    ------------------------------
    "It be's dat way sumtimes." ~ Coco B. Ware

  6. #6
    Ad Network Rep ToddCrawford's Avatar
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    quote:
    Todd what is so hard for pro-active CJ to just make a policy that no affiliate/merchant/Duper can set a sales tracking cookie without a physical click. Certainly CJ has to require some real value by any party to earn the right to a commission or outright theft will become the rule of the jungle.


    We have a policy against websites that force clicks. This is against our basic PSA and is not part of the CoC. Software is slightly different since it is something the end user installs on their computer and he or she is agreeing to let it do what it does. your point of "earning the right to the commission" is a valid one. The consumer is the one who is deciding who gets the commission based on the value the software provides (or does not provide) them.

    Todd Crawford
    Commission Junction

  7. #7
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    Todd that is not new. I asked this a few years ago. If merhcants can be affiliates they do such things, they overwrite affiliate cookies, and send the sales to they own affiliate account wether from their own business or for other merchants as well.


    carneol

  8. #8
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    Have you looked at polls on how many users NOT even aware of parasites detected on their PC.

    CJ can choose to ignore these facts if they choose to but doing so is not in the best interest of consumers, affiliates or many of the merchants who have real knowledge of the damage done by parasitic applications.

    The fact you allow applications found in violoation of the COC to simply restate their terms and be openly re-embraced to do business as usual is more than gross negligence IMO.

    Your actions to date do not protect affiliates, merchants or consumers. They have however allowed them to be openly preyed upon for CJ's own financial enrichment.

    ** Have you asked for change? **

  9. #9
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    This is not a case of "software" that the user has downloaded.

    As far as "earning the right to the commission", they are surreptitiously placing their competitor's affiliate cookies on users machines, so that the competitor is effectively forced to pay commissions on their own organic SE traffic. The consumer is not deciding who gets the commission; the perpetrator is.

    The fact that one of CJ's prime advertisers is being screwed by another one should be cause for concern. Or maybe not; CJ gets their piece of the pie, and a bigger piece in this particular circumstance where a merchant is hornswaggled into paying commissions on sales they generate on their own organic site traffic.

    I've got a strong feeling that the victim merchant is not going to take this lightly.

    ------------------------------
    "It be's dat way sumtimes." ~ Coco B. Ware

  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador John Kruger's Avatar
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    quote:

    We have a policy against websites that force clicks. This is against our basic PSA and is not part of the CoC. Software is slightly different since it is something the end user installs on their computer and he or she is agreeing to let it do what it does.
    Todd Crawford
    Commission Junction


    Does this mean a site is in 'compliance' if the terms of use for the site make reference to the user agreeing to such action?


    John

    Once a year, go someplace you've never been before.

    Want to go fly fishing?

  11. #11
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    quote:
    a merchant is hornswaggled into paying commissions on sales they generate on their own organic site traffic.



    By the way, a few Linkshare merchants are in the mix as well. Try dodging them.

    ------------------------------
    "It be's dat way sumtimes." ~ Coco B. Ware

  12. #12
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    "We have a policy against websites that force clicks. This is against our basic PSA and is not part of the CoC. Software is slightly different since it is something the end user installs on their computer and he or she is agreeing to let it do what it does. your point of "earning the right to the commission" is a valid one. The consumer is the one who is deciding who gets the commission based on the value the software provides (or does not provide) them.

    Todd Crawford
    Commission Junction
    _____________________________

    Please explain what CJ and the merchant is going to do with the commission money on the majority of BHO infected systems where the endusers doesn't have a clue where the f*ckin popups are coming from. How can they agree to steal my sites referral commissions... when they haven't a clue it doesn't go the EcomCity.

    You think we fell of the turnip truck Todd. Your a wet behind the ears executive thinking working with the Ad Whores daily gives you insight into consumer behavior and what it takes to run a etailing business. CJ is just another mass advertising Ad Whore, like DoubleClick/Valueclick with a reporting hook and some trusted party spin.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

    [This message was edited by EcomCity.com on February 16, 2004 at 11:08 PM.]

  13. #13
    I like traffic lights
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    >Does this mean a site is in 'compliance' if
    >the terms of use for the site make reference
    >to the user agreeing to such action?

    Loophole? :^)

    ****************************
    George Orwell got the date wrong

  14. #14
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    It bears repeating that this incident had nothing to do with BHO's or user-downloaded software.

    It is a simple entry popup on the perp's site, with iframes automatically loading cookies for merchant programs that are otherwise not promoted at all on said site.

    ------------------------------
    "It be's dat way sumtimes." ~ Coco B. Ware

  15. #15
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    OK so let's say, hypothetically, that what is going on here is acceptable.

    But let's turn it up a notch.

    What if the CJ merchant has links on the merchant site which, when clicked, lead to a page that resets the cookie via iframes?

    ------------------------------
    "It be's dat way sumtimes." ~ Coco B. Ware

  16. #16
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    What if the software is a driveby download that the user does not want?

    What if the software was installed after the user tried to close a pop up window but accidentally pressed ok.. yes, it does happen with those annoying pop ups that happen so often that a user can easily click ok when they just want to close those pop up windows?

    What if the user does not know what they are in for and click ok by default just to move on?

    Parasites are thieves. What are you going to do about it?

  17. #17
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    womanht:
    for the described action no drive-by action is neccessary. It is a javascript in the affiliate/merchants website which works in the customers temporary internet folder. It opens a pop-up window which perhaps is shut within 5 seconds and which has an i-frame in it which sets the desired cookie. No action from the customer is neccessary because it overwrites cookies by inserting an earlier date of livetime of the cookie.

    Todd: It is not only a click forcing but also a commission stealing.

    carneol

  18. #18
    ABW Ambassador Andy's Avatar
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    When you open the door to allow a few affiliates in who operate in the "gray area," you also allow a lot of other unsavory characters in.

    The networks have rolled out the red carpet to this type of behavior, by allowing affiliates using software that overwrites other affiliates cookies into the network.

    The statement that the end user has chosen to allow the overwriting to happen is a cop out. The majority of the end users do not understand what they have on their computers, what it does, or how it got there. They are being taken advantage of, and it will backfire on all participants.

    Consumers are really sick and tired of the pop ups and sneaky tactics, and those who do such things or allow them to be done, will ultimately pay the price for their dirty deeds!

    Enjoy it while it lasts, the end is coming!

    Andy

    _______________
    Call the Exterminators! We've Got PARASITES!

  19. #19
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    If you have evidence of something like this happening, document it and take it up with the network. If the network doesn't take care of it, then bring it public. Just speculating about it here doesn't accomplish anything.

    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com

  20. #20
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    You guys are just giving Todd the opportunity to say the right thing in front of his customers (the 'advertisers').

  21. #21
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    What speculation?

    ------------------------------
    "It be's dat way sumtimes." ~ Coco B. Ware

  22. #22
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Not such much you, Chief, but everyone else who is saying "what if".

    If a merchant is doing things like you and the others describe, a quick report to CJ should get the merchant taken care of. If it doesn't, I think we'd all like to know.

    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com

  23. #23
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    A merchant who does this hurts his affiliates, his competitor and his competitor's affiliates, the network, and in the long run, himself. He just lost one of his top ten (if not #2 or #3) affiliates.

    For my part, it is going to take many hours and days to replace this merchant's links. Hours and days that I would otherwise spend building out more material for Zappos and Shoes.com. So they are getting a Golden Shaft too.

    This really sucks.

    ------------------------------
    "It be's dat way sumtimes." ~ Coco B. Ware

  24. #24
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Well if this shoe merchant (most likely middlemans) is doing blind cookie stuffing and cookie overwrites from hidden in-site navigation links this stinks. If these are drop shipping middlemen doing reciprocal cookie stuffing for each other and various shoe merchants on their various pages, clone sites and the Serps, this is a restraint of trade.

    Sounds like CJ needs to openly discuss this issue. Who is the merchant perp so we all can investigate.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    "Payment is one option that isn't negotiable. Merchants require it for purchases ...SO DO WE."

  25. #25
    Ad Network Rep ToddCrawford's Avatar
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    PM me with details and we will investigate and take appropriate action(s).

    Todd Crawford
    Commission Junction

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