Archive for July, 2012

Facebook Click Fraud?

Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

A month ago, I posted “Why You Can’t Make Any Money with AdWords” which discussed pay-per-click advertising fraud. Now there is a related story about Facebook ads.

Limited Run, a New York start-up company says that they found what looks like bots clicking their Facebook ads, and burning up their advertising budget. Their is no way that Facebook or Google can stop criminals from clicking on your ads. However, they can scrutinize traffic and give you refunds for fishy-looking clicks. Google AdWords does that; I don’t know about Facebook.

Google has a much larger policing problem because sites that run AdSense have an incentive to click on ads that appear on their site – at least until Google catches them. As far as I can tell, Facebook doesn’t have revenue sharing, so you can’t make any money by hiring a shady character with a bot network to click the ads that appear on your Facebook profile.

A possible motive to click Facebook ads could come from short-sellers. Right? You put on your short position, you fire up the bots, and then you sit back and wait for Facebook’s advertisers to raise a stink.

In any case, it’s Facebook’s responsibility to deliver real leads to their advertisers no matter what the bad guys are doing. And if Facebook doesn’t have a click-fraud detection system, and refund policy, in place now, they had better get one fast.

Nailed It: No Jobs-Ageddon

Sunday, July 29th, 2012

Two months ago, investors were freaking out over a weak payrolls report. But I took the other side of the trade right into the teeth of the panic and posted: “Jobs-Ageddon? Maybe Not“. That was on June 4th, which was the exact bottom of the summer correction – see the red arrow on this S&P 500 chart (click to enlarge):

Not bad, huh?

By contrast, on that day, beartard “Tyler Durden” at Zero Hedge predicted a further 60% drop in the XLF:

“While not all of the US financials have active CDS, the dependence between stocks and credit had remained high with current CDS levels inferring a drop of over 60% in XLF as the top 30 globally most systemically important financial entities reach their March 2009 peak in riskiness once again.”

Umm…no. The financials rallied back with the rest of the market.

Ghost Posts

Friday, July 27th, 2012

If you subscribe to this blog via Google Reader, you may see three “ghost posts” in the list: “Ghost Bank”, “Don’t Mess with the US”, and “40 Acres of Sand and a Camel”. Those are all drafts, which were accidentally published and then unpublished. WordPress has an “interface bug” where your draft posts look just like published posts, and the “Publish” button is retitled to “Update” after a post is published. So, it is very easy to accidentally click “Publish” instead of “Save” on a draft after making an edit. So, that’s what happened.

In addition to that, the Googlebot monitors this site very closely. It pounces seconds after I hit the “Publish” button and adds the post to your RSS feed. And finally, Google Reader freezes posts in carbonite, Han Solo style. So, once it is in your feed, you will never see any edits made to it, and it will still be there even if it is taken down.

Audit the Fed? No, Audit the Sweatshops

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

Ron Paul’s bill to audit the Federal Reserve Bank passed the House of Representatives today. But what is good for the sanctimonious libertarian goose is good for the gander, right?

It was libertarian “free trade” policies that converted millions of American middle-class jobs into Asian sweatshop jobs. So, Congress should pass a law requiring webcams in every sweatshop that makes goods for export to the USA. The webcams will feed video to a free website operated by the Department of Labor, and anybody will be able to “audit” any sweatshop whenever they want.

Suicides, knife fights in dormitories, rats & roaches crawling over sleeping workers, underage girls getting their faces burned off in easily-preventable industrial accidents.

Let’s have a look at how the libertarian sausage is made, shall we?

Death by China

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

“Death by China” is supposed to be released soon with Martin Sheen as the narrator of the documentary: