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  1. #1
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    quote:
    Further, 180solutions said that it only uses double pop-ups with Commission Junction's network, and hidden pop-ups with LinkShare's network.


    Now, just a stupid question ... why does CJ and LS need to do compliance testing when 180 publically stated what they are doing?

    Full Article here
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  2. #2
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    [From the deleted duplicate subject post]

    quote:
    Originally posted by BLFH (Ms. B):
    http://www.mediapost.com/dtls_dsp_ne...?newsID=259880

    Caution...get your hip waders out. There are just soooo many points to be made regarding this article. A bit of time on my part regarding responses is probably wise.
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador cditty's Avatar
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    What a crock.

    Chris
    Recycled Talent - Architects of custom scripts and snippets, perfectly written to suit any need. We stay on top of the latest technology so you don't have to.
    Total Stupidity - Shining light on stupid things.

  4. #4
    Troll Killer and best Snooper!
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    Stephen Messer said,
    quote:
    Messer added that he has requested further "backup" research from Edelman, but so far has not received it. "


    Well, considering that the compliance email addy is broken (Ben reported that at ABW) it's no wonder. LS probably broke it on purpose just so they could claim that Ben was at fault.

  5. #5
    Defender of Truth, Justice and the Affiliate Way
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    Rhea,

    That addy is now working. I have verified and received a response from it.

  6. #6
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    That's quite an article. Let me do some point-by-point rebuttal.

    180solutions clarified that it does not incur any revenue from its deployment of double and hidden pop-ups

    My testing shows -- proves! -- that 180 sets affiliate codes, via LinkShare and CJ tracking links. Do merchants go on to pay 180 money in response to these tracking codes? According to LinkShare and CJ's published program rules, merchants are required to pay such money (if the tracking codes were set in a way permissible under network rules, etc.). I've never heard of a non-paying affiliate link -- why would any affiliate, even 180, waste time setting affiliate codes if it wasn't going to receive commissions?

    To be clear on what my research shows: I've shown the affiliate links being invoked, and cookies being set accordingly. I've shown other affiliates' codes being overwritten. Can I know what commissions merchants ultimately pay to 180, what checks get issued? No, of course not. But we know from the many messages linked in my article that plenty of merchants (and other networks) have expelled 180, unwilling to pay commissions to 180. We know 180 previously told MSNBC it was receiving large commissions from Dell and others. It's not a big leap to conclude that 180's affiliate links work like all other affiliate links in that, once activated, they cause commissions to be paid to 180.


    the hidden pop-ups detected in the Edelman research report are devoid of any tags or codes that redirect to 180solutions or its advertisers

    Uh, no. See http://www.benedelman.org/spyware/18...liates/#silent . The tracking codes are there. There's no denying that the tracking codes exist, in the double popups and the hidden popups. I have proof -- lots of packet logs, along with videos (including some that show the Cookies folder before and after browsing to a targeted web site on a PC with 180 installed), etc.

    Another way to verify the falsity of this claim: It's inconsistent with 180's admission in the subsequent paragraph, that 180 uses "hidden popups with LinkShare's network."


    the hidden pop-ups detected in the Edelman research report are devoid of any tags or codes that redirect to 180solutions or its advertisers, commissions that ought be paid to other affiliates

    I think the best way to understand this 180 statement is to place great emphasis on the "that ought to be paid to other affiliates" clause. 180 is claiming, in short, that their hidden popups mean commission ought to be paid to 180. I don't agree, and LinkShare's rules couldn't be more clear about this: Hidden windows are not a permissible way to set tracking codes and earn commissions.


    180solutions said that it only uses double pop-ups with Commission Junction's network, and hidden pop-ups with LinkShare's network

    False. I have proof -- of 180 hidden popups targeting CJ merchants, and of double popups targeting LinkShare. It's true that most of 180's hidden popups target LinkShare, and many (perhaps most, i.e. more than half) of 180's double popups target LinkShare. But 180's claim is much stronger than this -- they're saying double popups only target CJ and hidden popups only target LinkShare. This claim is false, and I can prove it with packet logs and videos.


    LinkShare has requested further "backup" research from Edelman, but so far has not received it

    It's true: LinkShare asked me for further proof, beyond the extensive proof already offered on my public web site. I was not willing to share this additional data with LinkShare on the terms they requested. Among other differences of opinion between myself and LinkShare, LinkShare staff seem to be of the opinion that I should provide them with such research without charge. In contrast, I'm of the opinion that I should be paid a reasonable fee for my services. I can certainly see why LinkShare might not want to pay -- they'd rather keep the money, which goes right into their bottom line. But I'm not a Mother Teresa figure here -- I have expenses, from equipment in my lab to rent to ordinary living expenses. I've posted sufficient research to my public site to directly discredit many of 180's claims (i.e. the "no codes in hidden IFRAMEs" claim), and to allow competent testing staff to verify my findings by looking at the merchants I specified.

    As to the verifiability of my results: 180's double popups remain widespread, and its hidden popups continue too. Only 36 hours ago, I made more videos and packet logs of hidden popups targeting major merchants on the major affiliate networks.

    If LinkShare had the right kind of testing system in place -- a real lab, with network monitoring equipment; and with testing staff who invest serious time in figuring out how 180 works and in streamlining and automating testing of 180 -- they'd surely be able to find and confirm my results without any assistance from me.



    180solutions has been in compliance with all of LinkShare's regulations

    I truly don't understand how Messer can make this claim. Three paragraphs above, 180 admitted to using "hidden pop-ups with LinkShare's network." What kind of hidden popups could possibly be consistent with LinkShare's regulations?



    A personal note: I'll be travelling most of this afternoon and evening, so I won't be able to respond promptly to new posts in this thread.

  7. #7
    Defender of Truth, Justice and the Affiliate Way
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    Ben sent me some of his raw data for review and verification of his findings. I have reviewed this. I am working on my assessment of the information sent for review and I will be publishing my findings hopefully tonight sometime.

    In a couple of hours I will devoting my time exclusively to getting my findings published, so if you guys are emailing, IM'ing, PM'ing or phoning me and getting no response that is why. I'll resurface when I'm done. But it is extremely important to address the issues being brought up here.

  8. #8
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Great work Ben and I'm sure Ms.B is getting an eyefull of the disection of 180Solutions cookie stuffing scheme. How can an affiliate earn millions a month without any real domain traffic or physical clicks from hidden iframed popsup/unders if they honor the no-parasite afsc=1 tag and/or identify the LS-CJ-Performics cookie setting server links?

    The "Perp-e-Traitor" comment of the day ...."Messer compared LinkShare's problem to anti-virus companies. He said that since ad-supported software companies are constantly modifying their practices, affiliate networks, like anti-virus companies, have to constantly react to what they do-until Microsoft either effectively closes the desktop or the government bans ad-supported software. At the same time, he says that LinkShare doesn't want to shut down new innovations in e-commerce. He notes that to date, 180solutions has been in compliance with all of LinkShare's regulations."
    Webmaster's... Mike and Charlie

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  9. #9
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
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    quote:
    the hidden pop-ups detected in the Edelman research report are devoid of any tags or codes that redirect to 180solutions or its advertisers, commissions that ought be paid to other affiliates


    Translation: All your commissions are belong to us!
    Comments are opinion unless otherwise noted. Remember, pillage first. Then burn. Half of all people in the world have IQs under 100. You best learn to trust ol' SSanf!

  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador
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    Excellent work Ben. Thank you.

    Can you please elaborate on Mr Messer's comment where he says that you said that you cannot replicate your results? Did something change and 180 has been cleaned up or what exactly is going on?

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador Andy's Avatar
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    quote:
    Haiko wrote:
    Now, just a stupid question ... why does CJ and LS need to do compliance testing when 180 publically stated what they are doing?

    WHY INDEED!

    Andy

  12. #12
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    quote:
    Originally posted by jimbo2002:
    Can you please elaborate on Mr Messer's comment where he says that you said that you cannot replicate your results? Did something change and 180 has been cleaned up or what exactly is going on?
    As my article describes, 180 has scaled back some of its hidden affiliate code replacements since I conducted the tests. So not every merchant I reported as targeted with hidden links (as of late June) is still targeted in that way.

    However, I've continued to receive 180 hidden affiliate code replacements as recently as the past 48 hours (and I have the date/time-stamped network logs and same-time videos to prove it). I have every reason to believe this activity continues, but now that I'm away from my lab for a few days, it's harder to test.

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