As of 2016-02-26, there will be no more posts for this blog. s/blog/pba/
Showing posts with label advertisement. Show all posts

Even with all these systems and people working to stop bad ads, there still can be times when an ad slips through that we dont want. There are many malicious players who are very persistentthey seek to abuse Googles advertising system in order to take advantage of our users. When we shut down a thousand accounts, they create two thousand more using different patterns. Its a never-ending game of cat and mouse.

This summarizes up how worse those bad and abusive people are on the Internet, even Google confirmed it and has to deal with them with much efforts in order to keep them away. I recommend that you read the post, just to know how serious the situation is and what steps Google are taking to fight against scammers, though I don't feel Google is the one winning, but it's trying.

I read it because I need to read something, I am forcing myself to read everyday. Not I was interested in this topic, but I was glad that I read it with patience. Google has a system which involves three different aspects to decide and co-judge whether a subject is bad or good, do they (machine or human) need to take further steps or just block, and so on.

You will find that human truly is the last defense in all three aspects, they make the final call when machine can't tell. Like other modern system, decision isn't made by fixed rules, they can evolve and learn from mistakes (errors, which human points out), still, human is the most crucial component.

If I recall correctly, I only reported once on a Google ads. That ads tricked me to click on a text saying "Close," and I did click on it. It was instinctive reaction when that ads kept flashing strong colors like between red and yellow. It was so annoying, although I rarely saw such kind of trash ads via Google's advertisement system, but I did that time.

Out of natural instinct, I clicked on that "Close," however that would never got you to close that ads. Instead, I was brought to the ads' website. I was fooled, clearly.

That was only time I saw a bad ads via Google, I think Google does a good job on protecting their profitable advertisement system. There might be more, only I hardly pay much attention to ads, and my eyes and brain are well-trained ad-filter, but some slip through. I care more about email spam since it's main source I would see a spam or phishing email.

I would believe that Google has actually brought those scammers to court, they had done so to spammers. They have all information of all advertisers, so there should have no problem to file a lawsuit against a scammer. Name, address, phone number, credit card, everything they need is already in Google's database. Some could be fake, but it can't be all. Identity thief, come on, this is not a drama.

Anyways, I am looking forward to more posts like this.

On February 24, a few hours after I posted Google Search's Blocked Sites, I noticed ads clicks increased in abnormal rate.
  • 2012-02-25T01:10:00Z - 0 clicks - Blog post posted.
  • 2012-02-25T07:06:07Z - 25 clicks - The first time I noticed the situation.
  • 2012-02-25T08:28:11Z - 31 clicks
  • 2012-02-25T08:44:19Z - 34 clicks
  • 2012-02-25T08:59:54Z - 35 clicks
  • 2012-02-25T09:14:10Z - 39 clicks
  • 2012-02-25T20:47:37Z - 62 clicks
I knew this could cause problem when there was only 25 clicks. Yes, only, the final is 62 clicks. I googled "Someone is clicking on my ads" right away and found out how to Keeping my account in good standing when invalid clicks shows up. I reported those invalid clicks when there was only 25 invalid clicks.

Needless to say, this might do some damage if I didn't report and I was really scared because I had never thought someone would target at my blog and AdSense has no real way to tell if that's made by account holder or not.

I believe these clicks were done with malicious intention. I have few possible theories about why the person did this:
  1. Someone wants to get my AdSense account terminated.
  2. Someone thinks this can make money for me because he or she extremely appreciates my works. (I extremely doubt this)
  3. Someone wants to poke for AdSense's response by clicking on other's AdSense ads. Read and Check the other's website, if the site posts any updates.
  4. Someone is competitor to this blog. (My blog isn't popular at all)
  5. Someone hates me. (I am sure I didn't piss off someone recently)
  6. Someone is sociopath, he or she just want to make people some troubles.
I believe #1, #2, #4, #5, and #6 is not the case. Since I believe it's #3, so I deliberately postponed posting this post for a week. I do not want the clicker gets the information I am about to say. Hopefully, one week is long enough.

When I was filling out that report form and prompted for any information about the clicker is helpful, such as date/time, location or IP.

I have Google Analytics and AdSense account linked, so I can read the revenue in Google Analytics reports. From there, I know the exact amount ad clicks on that blog post and the city of the clicker from, which was Horsham, Pennsylvania. I also checked all visit from that city. There was only three in January and the rest were those invalid clicks. So I was 100% sure, the clicker's location was in Horsham.

Unfortunately, I didn't have IP address since Google Analytics does not provide such information. This is a Blogger blog, I have no webserver access log. Later, I knew I could get IP from Google App Engine access log, becaues the JavaScript, stylesheet, and webfonts are hosted on App Engine.

I wrote a simple code to find out the locations from IPs on GAE, but none of them was from Horsham. Which only makes me believe more that someone was using not only the ads on my blog but also computer program to emulate clicks, because:
  • There didn't seem to have requests on other resources (JavaScript, CSS, etc).
  • It seemed to be two ads clicks per pageview. In that blog post, there is two ad units.
  • The clicking rate is not so irregular to me, it doesn't seem to be possible to have a human sit in front of computer, hit refresh, then click on ads.

So, what have AdSense team responded with? That's one I am not going to tell, but remember there is a note on that form: AdSense team may not respond. I am not confirming nor denying anything here.

Beside the fear of being terminated, I wanted AdSense to remove those revenue from my account since it's not the money I earned. No contest from me, I would like some pocket money, but not this money.

This post is written for people who might encounter the same situation, I hope this will help people to find out clicker's information and to know where to report the invalid clicks in order to protect yourself.

I was wandering around the settings section and found out I can not only turn off sharing on Google+ but also have Google Analytics support from Blogger. I recall I had read it long time ago on Blogger Buzz.

I want it because the pageviews from View will be also tracked. I can not touch the code of View, so this option is very helpful if I want to have complete tracking statistics. I have put View link on top of navigation bar for really long time and I probably lost some data.

I wrote my own Layout template, so it won't work by default in my own layout. It is actually very simple to have it, add the following line before </body>, e.g.
  <b:include data='blog' name='google-analytics'/>

I also removed the tracking code from my main JavaScript script, so I wouldn't have duplicate data.

This is probably the second of third time I use View mode on Blogger, not only on my blog but entire Blogger blogs. I don't really like View, it looks good and nice, but I am just not a fan of it.

Maybe because it create unique style over different blogs. I like variety, diversity of styles or layouts or designs. Pretty or ugly, doesn't matter. The important thing is the style of the blog's owner. With View, it doesn't reveal of that much.

Since I hardly check the View of my blog. I just realize there are two ads units. One at right side, the other at bottom. I roughly check with FireBug Net tab, I think they are belong to me, my Google AdSense Publisher ID, I believe. (It's long ID, but looks like mine)

As you may know, I put two ad units in my template, so I don't object for the such convenience. Just I don't see any setting options I can adjust size or location for my View. So it probably also a unique setting all over the views, I guess.

I love this ad:

It's time for a phone to save us from our phones.

But I don't understand how could you not be trapped in this phone again? You still need to use it and you still get caught up.

I always hate phones, not just mobiles. They are so annoying, well, that's what they are for. They have tiny screen, tiny buttons or keyboard. It doesn't matter if it's real buttons or on-screen keyboard, they are just too tiny to type. It doesn't matter if the system is smart enough to correct your typo or any mistakes, because there is no such smart system. If there is, you don't need a phone.

I can't understand why so many people are willing to type or finger scrolling that awkward thing, and think "This is so cool! I could do XYZ on my phone!" Alright, it's cool but it's waste of time. When it's not a time waster, you don't need a phone.

Someday in the future, an ads would be with such tag line: "It's time for not using a phone to save us from our phones."

It does not mean you don't use phone anymore, it means you do not need a phone to do things you used to do on your phone including phoning someone. You do not need a phone to phone. That's really the saver, not having another phone. Another phone, it's just another iteration of an endless loop. You would never be able to get out.

For now, I would rather carrying a 15.4-inch, 6+ lbs laptop with me other than using a light and tiny so-called {smart,i,[insert here yours]}phones.

Please let phone be just phone! You know pressing numbers and hit the call button. That's all you need for a phone.

Remember history often repeats itself! We don't need recreation, we need innovation deep from the foundation.