The internet is full of super heroes. These superheroes help us find good deals, look good and feel good about ourselves, and provide us with an endless supply of LOL's. Using their super powers, they often protect the common-man from online scams and identity theft.
However there is another villain lurking on the internet: website owners who purposely place ads that trick users into clicking them - only to be redirected to a different site where you'll see more popups than an old popup blocker is blocking! If this happens enough, your computer can become slow or unstable…and nobody needs that kinda tomfoolery in their lives!
Fortunately for you, some real life superheroes have taken it upon themselves to fight these scammers – one of whom is Nate of Adshrink.net. Here's how he describes his mission:
I started this blog in early 2010 because I was sick of seeing websites with terrible ads ruining my surfing experience. It's frustrating when you land on a page and the first thing you see is junk that takes up an inch of your screen or pops up immediately after you get there. You scroll past it, but then more comes down…it gets worse every time! Before long, you're wondering if "click here" really will take you to another website (and win your choice of either an iPod Shuffle, $1 million dollars, or 1 year free dog food). But it never does--instead, all you get are popups everywhere, sign-up requests for this and that, and coupons that just don't work.
Which probably sounds familiar to you – it's a problem everyone has to deal with: webmasters who think their revenue model should be getting as many ads as possible on every page of their website. Sad thing is - people agree to these adverts because they simply need the money! But it DOES NOT MEAN THEY SHOULD PUT THE MESSAGE ABOVE THE USER'S NEEDS.
For example, let's say you own a website selling shoes…and your whole site is covered with advertisements leading to pages offering "free shoes"…oh yeah, every one of those will send your users straight into an e-mail list building machine! And if you just ignore those requests to sign up, your shoe page will have a pop-up that looks like this:
I doubt any website owner WANTS to make their users feel this way – it's the same thing as the bait and switch scams people use in real life. But I also know from conversations with friends who run sites that they hate ads too – even if they need the revenue! The problem is, most of them don't want ads from companies or publishers that distribute malware, but many of these things are hard for a webmaster to detect - especially since some advertisers pay lots of money to "trick" the site into carrying their badware. That means it's time for a REAL hero – someone who can look at a website and tell you if there is any malware on it, and how badly:
That stinks: 1380 out of 1674 advertisers carry badware. But don't worry, we found someone to fix that for us – Adshrink.it! All you do is type in the URL of the site whose ads are annoying you, click "Go" and get this result back instantly + detailed information about every advert on the page - including screenshots! And all it costs is 1 free US or CAN text message…which works out to be less than 2 cents per report!
If anyone knows someone who might find this useful , spread the word by forwarding/posting/tweeting/linking to it - no matter how much it actually costs, Adshrink.it makes their money by sharing the revenue with you if your friends sign up for a free account!
So give it a try today – and remember to check back every once in a while because Nate is constantly adding new features including an API to make website owners' lives easier! When you're done, why not thank him personally on his blog ? He works hard at this, so let's show our appreciation by showing him that his mission has been accomplished!
Posted by joshualevy at 8:43 PM 1 comment: Links to this post
Adshrink.it is an automated service which checks websites for malware and bad ads. For instance, take a look at this screenshot of Ask.com's ads:
Looks like most of the ads are all safe…but wait! Look at this one (highlighted) - do you really trust them? This may be completely harmless, but sometimes they act as gateways to malware advertising "affiliate programs" that make lots of money for hackers. It's obvious they don't care about protecting users…since when does a download button need an "e" in it? That usually means it will open up another document or application behind your back…and that can prove deadly on sites related to finance and banking.
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