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  1. #1
    Comfortably Numb John Powell's Avatar
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    Can Webmaster restrict inbound links?
    All links to the Site must be approved in writing by STACKSANDSTACKS.COM .
    I saw this here. According to them this link is a violation. Where have I been not seeing this before, and is it common?

  2. #2
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bumpaw
    I saw this here. According to them this link is a violation. Where have I been not seeing this before, and is it common?

    Haven't seen that -- usually a site will have a disclaimer saying that the site can not be responsible for sites that link to it.

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  3. #3
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    I've seen that sort of policy before, but it's not common. I also don't know if a site can ordinarily restrict you from linking to it (i.e. not as an affiliate) ...though of course they can if the restriction is part of their affiliate program.
    [URL=http://themoneyforums.com]The Money Forums[/URL]

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador DesignerWiz's Avatar
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    Interesting .... but an odd policy for sure.
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  5. #5
    Comfortably Numb John Powell's Avatar
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    They seem to threaten a physical block with .htaccess as a last resort. I'm guessing that it's not the casual links like this that they are worried about. They are probably afraid of someone stealing bandwidth by showing their content in frames or something like that.

    Maybe since they got a nice right up in last months Internet Retailer they are afraid of inbounds that will hurt their ranking. They were praised for their good organic ranking, and maybe they fear a competitor using inbounds to hurt them.

    Who knows for sure. It just looks weird telling the world to ask for permission to link in writing.

  6. #6
    general fuq mrbshouse's Avatar
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    seems like they are trying to protect thier name and i don't see anything wrong with it except for this.

    iii) the link, when activated by a user, displays that enter_name-here.com full-screen in a fully operable and navigable browser window and not within a "frame" on the linked website

    what they are saying that target="blank" is a no no did i read that right?

    I've seen some retailers that would not let you even mention the brand on your page (how the hell are you supposed to sell then...click here for a generic shirt lol). Technically you would be linking through a network so all of these points are miswritten...i think.

  7. #7
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    I once got a nasty automated email from a company that had been hired by a well-known small appliance manufacturer to search out trademark infringements. Their bot apparently decided that running a product feed from Amazon that included their client's product name was evil.

    Took an email or two to straighten them out. Otherwise, yes, we'd be back at "click here for a generic small appliance"!
    [URL=http://themoneyforums.com]The Money Forums[/URL]

  8. #8
    CPA Network Rep adFinityJoe's Avatar
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    DoctorMike, yes, I remember those emails. We're probably thinking about the same small appliance manufacturer. My recollection was that there were two sides of the company - one that managed the affiliate program and another that was responsible for brand management and they were working against each other (or at least the brand management part wasn't aware of affiliates or didn't realize how to manage the relationships).

    In reality, that part of the Terms of Use, by my understanding (and, of course I'm not a lawyer) is completely bogus. A web link is an independent reference and as such cannot be construed as being incorporated in a "terms of use". A web address is the same as a physical one. Just because you give directions to your friend to the nearest Wal Mart doesn't mean that you shop there, nor are you responsible for what happens once he arrives.

    So, in essence, no. You cannot legally restrict inbound links. Which raises the bigger question - why would anyone want to?

  9. #9
    Outsourced Program Manager paladin's Avatar
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    I remeber a legal case a few years ago with this same issue. A news site claimed that deep linking was costing them money. The argument was that because people did not go through their home page that their ad impression and clicks were reduced.

    Unfortunatley I do not remember the outcome, but it is similar to fast forwarding through TV commercials. Given that you can got to the kitchen while the commercials are running and return back to the show, on web sites you have to go through the "commercials" in the form of navigation pages to get to the content.

    On the other hand, a deep link is usually better for SEO then a home page link.

  10. #10
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Here are some details on court rulings:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deep_linking#Court_Rulings
    Michael Coley
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  11. #11
    Affiliate Manager
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    You could make a new TV show out of this - "Laywers Gone Wild".

  12. #12
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    That motorcross case is a little different when I read it. Involved a lot more than simple text links to a site. I don't think they have a legal leg to stand on. Someone has a site on the internet. If I want to link to it from my site with whatever text I want too, then I will. Don't think it's anything to worry about at all. Don't know if there are any actual cases besides that U.S. one in wikipedia which like I said, involved a lot more. I think it was something like linking to videos that would open up like it was part of the site that was linking.

    Motocross Video

    If that was a link and you clicked it and your video player opened with Motocross Video, it would look like it was part of or from this site, which it wasn't. I think that was the problem when I read about it, pretty sure but not for certain.

  13. #13
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    Yep, that's what it was:

    http://news.com.com/Judge+Cant+link+...l?tag=nefd.top

    "Davis, who was representing himself without an attorney, defended his Web site in legal filings that were full of bluster and accused SFX of acting like Genghis Kahn. He did stress that he merely included a "hyperlink, which launches the visitor's media player" instead of copying the audio file and republishing it. "

  14. #14
    general fuq mrbshouse's Avatar
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    totally different commerce vs entertainment, expecting a comission vs hot linking. They didn't even address the use of their images within the product feed.

    The terms that they have put up there as a blanket catch all seem to be written without consideration for the affiliate marketing activities....non web person writting terms for the web enviornment.

  15. #15
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    If links from other web sites were illegal, then Google would have to get permission to link to your site.

    Also, anybody heard of the Google Bomb, where a bunch of webmasters put miserable failure as a link title and linked to George Bushes page on the white house site. That page was number one for a search for "miserable failure" for over a year. I think if there were any laws broken there, the white house would have sent out some threatening letters.

  16. #16
    Beachy Bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheNewDonald
    You could make a new TV show out of this - "Laywers Gone Wild".
    If it were to be a documentary, surely it would have thousands of subjects readily available.
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  17. #17
    Affiliate Manager davidscookies's Avatar
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    No offense to the site owner but that seems like a very silly policy. Don't link to my site? That's where traffic comes from!!! I can see how one might be worried about backlinks from certain websites and that could be a real concern. I think there was a priest who got disrobed a few years ago because of some backlinks to his church's website. Poor guy, probably wasn't even his fault...

    Anyway, that's what 'reputation management' is all about. You can actually hire someone to clean this stuff up for you, though it can be costly.

  18. #18
    ABW Ambassador simcat's Avatar
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    A few years ago I saw a list of sites that 'forbid' you to link to them without permission. I remember there were a few well known retail co's on the list.
    No Idea where I found it tho...

  19. #19
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    Maybe they're trying to use reverse psychology to con free links from those whose first reaction to things like this is to put up a spite link!

    (I really didn't...I only put up merchant links if there's tracking code attached!)

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