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  1. #1
    Comfortably Numb John Powell's Avatar
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    Sneaky Affiliate Not Helping Our Image
    I was doing a little market research today in Google and saw that sneaky still works. I did a specific product search and 6 of the top 12 results were owned by one individual.

    This person has 4 different .info domains. Googlebot gets one result which I have to see in the Google Cache. Click the search result and you are redirected to a SAS merchant. Type in the domain and get 403 Forbidden.

    Now what really stinks is that my totally white hat pages won't even rank for the term I searched on. From the looks of the Cached version of the sneaky page it shouldn't rank either.

  2. #2
    Affiliate Manager MINDsprinter's Avatar
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    Jason Rosenbaum
    Affiliate Manager
    MINDsprinting

  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador
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    Report it to the merchant as well. They may be able to discern who the affiliate is, and drop them from their program.

  4. #4
    Comfortably Numb John Powell's Avatar
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    Report the spam:
    I did that, but you never know if it does any good.

  5. #5
    Comfortably Numb John Powell's Avatar
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    Is this type of cloaking considered evil only by Google? Is it against some merchants TOS? In this case it's not mentioned. Is it wide spread? Is it acceptable to the affiliate community? I would have thought there would have been more response, but maybe it's just an old issue that I'm late to worrying about.

  6. #6
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    I have no sympathy for engines.

  7. #7
    Mama in Charge Anne's Avatar
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    drats, you caught me

  8. #8
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    If this was just an SE issue, I would NOT be against him. In fact, it took me several minutes to stop thinking of the idea of all G's base belonging to me.

    But alas, there's a real problem, hiding in there.

    An autoredirect to the merchant (that triggers a tracking link) is going to stuff cookies. And THAT isn't any good.

    Is it against some merchants TOS?
    SE ownage, against a merchant's terms? Oh HELL no! Not if they've got any sense!

    But cookie stuffing, on the other hand, IS against several merchants, and SAS's, terms.

    If he's going to go to all the trouble of getting his spam to rank, he can spend another few bucks and get a pitch-writer to come up with a page of decent sales spin to redir to, instead of going direct-to-merchant. That way there wouldn't be any stuffing, and the panel lasts...well, it lasts until G catches it. And from what you describe, it's so obvious that it's not going to take 'em long...

  9. #9
    Comfortably Numb John Powell's Avatar
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    26 days after the spam report the creative advertiser is still place well in the search with his/her creative cloaking and I say good. That's my last spam report. I had regrets right after doing it. I have learned that you gotta do what you gotta do. I ain't gonna ride in G's posse again.

  10. #10
    More Cheesier Than Ever Cheesehead's Avatar
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    You sure it is not the merchant themselves acting as their own affiliate and thus wiping out any other affiliate cookies? I have seen merchants act as their own affiliate in PPC for this reason. PM me the merchant name if you can - I am curious about this.
    This World is Not My Home
    We're gonna go inside, we're gonna go outside, inside and outside. . . And then we're gonna go go go and we're not gonna stop til we get across that goalline! Quotes from the movie Rudy, 1993

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