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Hodgman

Ads impersonating GDNet

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Currently this is the only ad I see on GDNet. Every page I open, I see this Imposter. wtf!?


Also accurate for me though they NEVER show up on mobile :S

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Currently this is the only ad I see on GDNet. Every page I open, I see this Imposter. wtf!?
Yup. For me too its pretty much the only ad I see.

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Have you considered other ad networks, like Google Adsense for example?

This is not the first time that there were problems with the banner, after all.

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Have you considered other ad networks, like Google Adsense for example?

This is not the first time that there were problems with the banner, after all.

 

Adsense booted us.. and there doesn't seem to be a close second.   Even with media.net and their ads we'll only make about $5 per day which is nowhere near enough.

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Oh wow, just tried and I bugged it up pretty hard. I tried loading the console just to see, and indeed the ad refreshed... back into the same ad. Meaning it completely failed to dodge it. Good job. (also if you can't get that situation to happen, the ad is its own frame, you can still examine its source code and it won't be able to tell you did)

 

For the record, detecting if the console is open turns out to be rather simple: just check the height difference between the window size and the document size (outer height vs inner height). If the difference is large enough it probably means the console is opened.

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Adsense booted us...
Out of curiosity, why would they do that? Surely, GD.net is enough of a "serious, high profile site" with enough visibility/exposure so they'd want you as customers, no?

 

637501985.keywordblocks.com, with the number being constant for every ad I'm currently seeing
Probably the 637501985 is a virtual host name (one for every site) that translates to "Gamedev.net" in this case, which lets them track which site the clicks came from. Or maybe they log it on their load balancer, to the same effect. One of the GET values would likely translate to what ad you clicked on (like "locksmiths", "cheap locks" or whatever).

 

Might be fun writing a bash script that forks off a few sub-shells running wget to do continuous GETs with some random 9-digit hostname on the keywordblocks.com domain and with some random GET vars (or maybe choosing random values out of a selection of 3-4 legitimate values) over night, and having the user-agent set to something like "Thank you for not stealing your copyrighted logo and impersonating our site. Are you getting the message or do we have to get more concrete?" followed by 4 kilobytes of random, incompressible data. You might add another 4kB of random data as GET variable if you feel funky, too. By default, pretty much every web server accepts anywhere from 4 to 16kB of data for GET-vars and user-agent (the hell, why would you want that! but they do!), and most of them log at least the URL and user-agent right away, and verbatim. Spawning an extra few thousand web server instances and filling the logs with incompressible data is a pretty safe way of getting a site administrator's attention.

 

I've actually done that thing once around 2004 or so (might have been 2005) with a particularly obnoxious "Canadian Viagra Pharmacy" (or similar) site that was really pissing me off. They had actually filled up three coworker's mail quota with spam, which was "only" 5GB at that time -- effectively disabling them from using email.

Much to my surprise (to be honest, pissed off as I was, I had never really expected that to work), they actually stopped sending us mail within 3 days of me starting the script on half a dozen machines here, and half a dozen machines in my old lab at my alma mater. Sadly, I don't think I still have the script around any more... in retrospective, that was actually quite fun. biggrin.png

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Out of curiosity, why would they do that?

 

Answered last month: "Google AdSense banned our ad account.. AdSense is a primary means of supporting the site so we are in emergency mode to fix the problem. Long story short, they don't like the way we display ads responsively (ie. how the site looks when you shrink the browser down). They also didn't like the dropdown menu directly covering the ad either.."

 

Might be fun writing a bash script that...

 

That would be bad. 

 

The advertiser would likely drop the site. And if the site is no longer on AdSense, would mean basically no revenue except from gd+ subscriptions.
 
I have read about temporary AdSense blocks before, they can be very painful.

 

There is no serious competition, so no good way to earn money from website ads except through Google. Google acquired the other major ad sources.  They bought Applied Semantics eleven years ago to build AdSense. They paid over $3B to buy DoubleClick, nearly a billion for AdMob, a half billion for Admeld, and so on.  There used to be lots of choices for website ads, but Google made themselves the monopoly through a bunch of buyouts. 
 
If the site is hurting on a temporary basis it might be time to bring back the donation form and the "donated money to the site" recognition, and/or have a membership drive again.  If the AdSense ban were to be permanent, well, that's really bad news. 

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