back to article Facebook tackles potent click fraud scam

Facebook is investigating reports that advertisers on the social networking site have been left well out of pocket as a result of click fraud. Networks of compromised PCs are often used to click on banner ads, generating income for unscrupulous affiliates at the expense of online advertisers, who effectively wind up paying for …


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  1. Fractured Cell


    Does anyone even browse myfacespacebook without ABP?


  2. A J Stiles
    Thumb Down

    PPC Poisoning

    My latest iteration of "aggressive advert-blocking" works by blocking known advertising sites at the nameserver level; so the pay-per-click adverts never even get downloaded to my screen. (Why, by the way, is no ISP offering this as a premium service? A tenner a month for no advertisements, and -- being server-level -- no software to download so it works fine with Mac, Linux and any future Windows that Microsoft may inflict. Gotta be worth it to someone, surely?)

    Might I be better off writing a proxy server which downloads both the advertisement *and* the linked page to /dev/null, in order to cost the advertiser money? If enough people used something like this, then maybe it would help paint internet advertising as ineffective and so dissuade anyone from using it .....

  3. Bernie 2

    One more nail in the coffin.

    Can't wait...

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And this is a problem?

    Surely the more this happens, the fewer advewrtisers there will be and we won't have to take steps to ensure that we're not bothered by the flood of advertised crap on this and other sites?

    If they weren't so tied up trying to sort out the advertising issues, maybe the coders at arsebook could actually re-write the buggy pile of shit that they're pedling.

  5. Anonymous Coward


    I can't believe that people are writing comments about how adverts are evil.

    If it wasn't for adverts you wouldn't be reading the register and commenting on it. It couldn't afford to exist. Advertising has proven itself to be the only way to monetise the Internet (in the same way that it proved the main route to monetise TV before that). If you can't monetise it, the only sites you get are written by jobless idiots. If you want quality journalism on the net you have to pay for it some way. The only thing I object to is the chocolate factory getting it's cut. I would much prefer independent advertisers or other companies to compete with the chocolate factory.

  6. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: Muppets

    What he said. If it weren't for adverts your beloved Moderatrix wouldn't be able to eat, and despite being a girl, I quite like food.

    They're a fact of life, folks. There are very good meditative techniques that can help you deal with that frustration and anger and such.

  7. Jess

    Javascript adverts are evil

    but I never see them because I use either netsurf of firefox with noscripts the majority of the time.

    I have no problem with adverts in the normal HTML of a site.

  8. Cameron Colley

    RE: Muppets

    So, not wanting to see intrusive adverts and preferring to read articles without having to scroll past them makes me a muppet? Enjoying something decent without having to pay makes me a muppet?

    The muppets are the advertisers who it seems, going by comments here and this story, are paying for clicks by bots while most people either ignore adverts or can't see them thanks to ABP, host files, and the like.

    Adverts may be a way to pay for the internet -- but the internet evolves and if advertisers don't get less annoying and start being more intelligent the whole pyramid may come tumbling down.

    I really do hope that most of the people who write for El Reg* get to carry on doing what they love -- but if they have to rely on advertisers alone there may not be much hope.

    *OK, all of them really.

  9. StillNoCouch
    Paris Hilton

    Facebook's true strategy

    ... is to simply suspend and/or cancel legitimate users of the sight with unspecified "violations" of nonexistent limits. Comment on a post your son made to your page on Fathers Day and you're slapped with an "Abusive Behavior" warning.

    That site is a joke.

    Paris: I would book a night in her face

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Google ads, what a bad joke...

    Plane crashes during storm, 280 feared dead.

    Ads by google :

    Top 10 air disasters

    Flying lessons

  11. Onionman

    Anger at adverts

    Can the guys who want no advertising explain their alternative? I'm curious as to how all the "free" sites will survive. How will they fund themselves in your ad-free utopia?

    You're all paid (directly or indirectly) by the fruits of capitalism. Relax and accept that an advert on the page isn't exactly an infringement of your liberty. It's what makes the internet such a cheap experience. Just ignore them if you want, but why get so angry? Furthermore, why be so condescending towards people who either place ads or click on them?


  12. Camilla Smythe

    Re: Muppets


    Implement the Moderatrix Naughty Box, MNB. 10 points total for strikes, with any single strike being worth 1 to 10 depending on how naughty it was and how bad you are feeling at the particular time you read it, and, having reached 10, we have to give you a Pound before you let us be naughty again.

    Include an extra box/link in the Add Comment thing with an indicator of naughtiness so far and time to Pound and maybe some slidey bar thing to give some idea about the rate multiplier for naughtiness given your mood at the time a comment is about to be published.

    Assume/Believe it's like one of those 'honesty' box things and give an address for the Postal Orders to be sent to. When a pound is due give an account/naughty number to which it should be applied for writing on the back of the PO.

    There you go.... Brilliant!!!! I'll only take 10% for the idea.... Errrrrmmmm OK I'm due 10% on future profits so let's call it quits.

  13. Anonymous Coward


    How do you tell the difference between a arsebook user and a script?

    The script will give intelligent output

  14. Anonymous Coward

    Three important rules

    #1 Don't use ArseBookSpacePlace...

    #2 Don't click on ads

    #3 Profit

  15. Neoc

    Re: Muppets

    On one side you have those who say "Adverts are evil, ban them all". On the other are those who expound "Adverts pay for the net, we need them". <sigh>

    And stuck in the middle are people like myself (and we're not that much of a minority) who don't mind adverts so long as THEY DON'T SHOUT THEIR BLOODY MESSAGE!!!!!1!!

    Yes, I use ABP - I got sick and tired of "punch the monkey" and other flash-based adverts screaming for my attention and interrupting my reading of a web-page. It's as bad as TV, were the adverts always seem to be several notches louder than whatever show you're watching.

    Bring back decent low-key adverts and I'll start reading them again.

  16. Trevor Pott o_O Gold badge


    While I wholeheartedly support the needs of the El Reg staff to consume nutrients, shelter from the elements and suchlike, I do wish there were an alternative to the ads. I'd cheerfully pay a monthly subscription to get access to an "El Reg Premium." No flash ads (or moving gifs,) add a few nifty features. (Like “earlier stories” going back a definable number of days, for those of us who get a little bogged down in work, and want to catch up.) Keep the content the same between ad-supported and non-ad supported, (that is important,) but give the premium folks more options in how to customise subtle elements of the site. (Maybe the ability to block authors or article types from their list?)

    I used to pay a fair amount for the local dead-tree newspaper, and have no issue paying that same amount for an actual subscription to El Reg, I imagine many regulars around here would feel the same. (What *do* you call readers of The Register? Vultures?) That’s ignoring the freetards, of course.

    Now, admittedly, I have no idea how having a split model like that would affect your advertising revenue, would the value per view decrease, as you now have a segment of paying subscribers? That's a realm of ecommerce I’ve not really had much experience with. My local newspaper charges for their fishwrapper, I see no reason that El Reg, (which I read daily), isn’t worth the same. Especially if it gets rid of flash ads/moving gifs.

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