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  1. #1
    Life is Supposed to be Fun! Rexanne's Avatar
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    Would it be best to keep the discussion and outing of unethical affiliates in a merchant/OPM only forum?

    I don't think it serves any purpose for other affiliates to know who's bending the rules. The onus is on the merchant end to rectify the situation and I think it would be more effective, ethical and safer for ABW to keep this information somewhat private.
    Peace,

    Rexanne

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  2. #2
    ABW Veteran Mr. Sal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rexanne
    I don't think it serves any purpose for other affiliates to know who's bending the rules.
    I really don't care who do what anymore, but I sure would like to know when I am dealing with a two-faced entity.

  3. #3
    Classic Rocker Mack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rexanne
    Would it be best to keep the discussion and outing of unethical affiliates in a merchant/OPM only forum?

    I don't think it serves any purpose for other affiliates to know who's bending the rules. The onus is on the merchant end to rectify the situation and I think it would be more effective, ethical and safer for ABW to keep this information somewhat private.
    I agree and would want to add a little more to that.

    Outing them in public also outs the techniques they used to be unethical in the first place. This may eventually do more harm than good because it will be making that information public for other idiots to try, or try and perfect.

    It would be better to keep it in an OPM/Merchant only forum. They are the ones who will benefit the most from it. Affiliates will also benefit because these people get removed from programs honest affiliates promote.

  4. #4
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rexanne
    Would it be best to keep the discussion and outing of unethical affiliates in a merchant/OPM only forum?

    I don't think it serves any purpose for other affiliates to know who's bending the rules. The onus is on the merchant end to rectify the situation and I think it would be more effective, ethical and safer for ABW to keep this information somewhat private.
    I disagree. I think a major reason why the unethical affiliates continue to do what they do is because their wrong-doings are kept somewhat private. I think many will see the light if they are publicly outed (or threatened with such). And for those who don't, merchants will have a way to quickly and easily identify the bad players.

    I think there's a legitimate concern that tactics (both for how they are being unethical and how they are detected) not be spelled out publicly, but I don't think that's going to be a problem.
    Michael Coley
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  5. #5
    Advocate mellie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rexanne

    I don't think it serves any purpose for other affiliates to know who's bending the rules.

    I think it's helpful to know who not to trust. It is probably safe to say we've all been surprised by both merchants and/or affiliates who have either lost their ethics or never had them in the first place. It's horrible when you find out too late.

    I think it is also especially good for newbies to know who is on the "bad list" so they can steer clear. With smooth talkers (posters) an unknowing person might take up with the unethical crowd.
    Melanie
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  6. #6
    Newbie HazelB's Avatar
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    [removed]

    This doesn't always work. Their are two popular tricks.

    First they [removed].

    Second, this too can be cleverly thwarted. If you [removed]

    I see this all of the time. Often the bad guys get lazy and [removed] so they can [removed]. If it is [removed] they [removed], it can only be sniffed out by a merchant/AM who [removed].

    Example
    [removed]

    [removed]

    The second one has [removed]. That would be [removed].
    Last edited by MichaelColey; December 19th, 2007 at 06:32 PM. Reason: Let's not reveal tactics

  7. #7
    ABW Ambassador
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    Chris, if you want to get their attention, just go bump one of their blogs with a comment. (check your pm)

  8. #8
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    I thought CP said he terminated the offending affiliates. The ones I see in Google, the links are still working. what gives?

  9. #9
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Let's not reveal tactics. The last thing we want UnethicalAffiliates.com becoming is a "how to manual" for unethical affiliates or a documentary on how others got caught.
    Michael Coley
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  10. #10
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    It's going to happen, that's what Mack was getting at. Like Ben's videos on cookie stuffing and other tricks. Informative for merchants on what to look out for and probably a lot of affiliates learned from those and copied those same techniques. It was a how to, step by step.

  11. #11
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Tactics are fine (and encouraged, I would hope) in the private Affiliate Manager forum, but I don't think they have any place in the public forums.
    Michael Coley
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  12. #12
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    It will, but there is no need to offer a handbook. I really don't understand why HazelB had to post that - To "show off" that you know the game? I mean come on what's the purpose? Please explain.
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
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  13. #13
    Troll Killer and best Snooper!
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    If I've correctly deduced the unethical affiliate referred to by Chris, then I think it's important to add to the discussion that the web site in question is redlined by McAfee Site Advisor for spamming.

    After entering our e-mail address on this site, we received 26 e-mails per week. They were somewhat spammy.
    If I was an affiliate manager I would not do business with any affiliate who was spamming. I mean, honestly, if a person is a spammer, why would anyone think that they'd be a standup citizen as an affiliate?

  14. #14
    ABW Ambassador
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    26 emails per week is UGLY!

  15. #15
    Newbie HazelB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haiku
    Please explain.
    I thought Chris would like to know there were more affiliates exhibiting the same or similar behavior, how they do it and emphasizing that they can often only be caught by knowing where your super affiliates traffic is coming from. If a super affiliate hides that from an AM then they should be booted pronto. It's hard though because, heck, they are a super affiliate and the money feels easy but once you boot them you'll see an instant increase in the revenue stream that they were stealing from.

    Not my intention to write a 'How To' on it. Just trying to make it clear to people who had no idea that Google allows that.

    'How Tos' can be found [removed]. The bad guys have the info and the sooner everyone knows the sooner it becomes impotent.

  16. #16
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    If we don't want a "How To" here, we don't want to tell people how to find them elsewhere, either.

    Sure, many bad players already know it. But how many more will be tempted to try it if clearly explained in such a public arena?
    Michael Coley
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  17. #17
    ABW Ambassador Daniel M. Clark's Avatar
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    I agree with Michael. Just because the information is out here, doesn't mean we should be making it easier to access.

    Everyone knowing will not make it impotent.

  18. #18
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    HazelB,

    IP Ban warning.
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  19. #19
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    Split off the original thread located at http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread.php?t=98989
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

  20. #20
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Thanks for splitting this out, Haiko. This discussion definitely merits it's own thread, and is a worthwhile discussion to have.
    Michael Coley
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  21. #21
    Outsourced Program Manager Jorge - SHOPiMAR's Avatar
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    Don't let the decisions to police and regulate the bad players be made for you, have a say in it yourself as when you know who the bad players are you will know who to directly trust and work with. You already see what happens or does NOT happen as some OPMs, Managers, Merchants and Networks still work with these bad players for years and nothing happens because they are tightly controlled and no one really knows who is doing what.

    As an affiliate you should always know what your competitors are doing and knowing you have a say so if they are doing something wrong helps you and other ethical affiliates win by controlling which partners the merchants you will work with and support.

    I also do not think it would be fair to have OPMs be the ones responsible for controlling or outing or getting rid of unethical affiliates because if an OPM is to get rid them, then it should be a joint effort from the merchants and networks they work on to get rid of them too at the same time, not years later or because some have more tolerance for bad players or friends with them than others. Many times I see unethical affiliates mentioned but they still remain on the network too. It would not be fair to a merchant, specially when they ask that question: Why are you getting rid of that affiliate when they are still approved by the network and also still works and is promoting my competitor?

    The UA tag line above says "Affiliate Marketing's Self Regulation Initiative"

    It should be a concern to all affiliates not just to OPMs, Managers, Merchants or Network to police and regulate only because then it would still be tightly controlled and some of those may still want to protect them.

  22. #22
    Affiliate Manager guinness618's Avatar
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    This reminds me of the study that says criminals who go to prison actually aren't reformed upon release, but because of their time in prison surrounded by better criminals, they come out even more enthused with better skills and illegal knowledge.

  23. #23
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    Kinda gettin dizzy going back and forth trying to read up on some of these posts but think this one is going back to the original post Rexanne made.

    I agree with Michael and Mellie. Think Mellie made a really good point, too. I don't even remember now how I found this place (think an affiliate manager told me) I sit and think of some poor soul out there that doesn't know about here and how they must just really be totally clueless as to what's goin on. I'm here and still don't understand everything and a lot of what I have learned has been really hard to sort out at times. I'm waaay too trusting a person at times and that's gotten me in trouble.

    I've always thought that it's best to know all the facts in regards to anything. If there's something somebody doesn't understand or just isn't aware of, unless somebody sits down and explains the facts to them honestly, they're either gonna continue on not knowing how to do things or possibly risk hurting themselves cos they learned things from somebody they shouldn't have.

    It sounds stupid to say but when you're first starting out I'd think most of us are pretty clueless so we do look for people to help us learn. We're not gonna know the difference in what's the right or wrong way to be doing things in the beginning cos we don't understand yet what's bad or the wrong way to be doin things. lol

    If when we start we look at some sites or people and think that's how things should be done but it turns out being wrong, it's much better to know that in the beginning. This is a great place for people to come and many have made friends here but I still think it's also a great place for people to learn and I'd rather have the facts out in the open so people have a chance of learning things the right way.

    As for what Jorge said, I agree, too. It's not fair just to put it all on the merchant or affiliate managers. Especially I would think the smaller ones cos there probably is a lot of pressure on them. It should be with everybody understanding what's going on then everybody's gonna know where people stand on things. People can form their own opinions then. Just me and my opinions, I'd rather know what's goin on, have facts and then be able to form my own opinion.

  24. #24
    Newbie HazelB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haiku
    HazelB,

    IP Ban warning.
    Warning noted. Sorry.

    I just hope that nobody gets unjustly hurt. It's really turning into a bad soap opera and it's ripe for a blackhat to come in and play you all against each other or against a competitor of theirs. The affiliate problem isn't just stealing exclusive coupon codes or simple trademark bidding. It's far more nefarious and deep. It is a scary place full of lots of scary people. Very clever yet ruthless people. I think any AMs who saw my posts before they were redacted are better AM's today for having seen them but I understand that it was a bit scary to see just the tip of the real iceburg.

    Feel Free to email Me
    HazelB
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  25. #25
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    Nice Sig. Kinda odd though, as it will be shown when you post -- seams self defeating, KWIM? But, that's ok, the tit for tat has been noted, not just by me either.

    -----------

    That said, I wonder how many other see what this NEW sub-forum has brought out of the woodwork. Hmmm, feathers ruffled?
    Continued Success,

    Haiko
    The secret of success is constancy of purpose ~ Disraeli

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