Nobody likes to be called a dummy by a dummy.

Admuncher is a referrer spammer

http://www.admuncher.com/
Permalink muppet 
August 25th, 2005
Apparently the software is being developed by 10 year olds, judging from the responses I got from the mods on their community forum.
Permalink muppet 
August 26th, 2005
muppet, you're an idiot. Sorry.

In more civilized words, you snap at someone/something first, think later (or never).

FYI: AdMuncher is simply what it says, a small utility that cuts advertisement out of the web pages. It is very efficient at that, too. One of the features it offers is obscuring the browser referer data, to thwart the sites that actually do referer scams. So www.admuncher.com is simply the default value for the "referer" field in its settings. I suppose that most people who use the feature do not bother to change the field, but I bet a lot of them do, so even if you don't see "www.admuncher.com" there it still may be munged. And it's not the only tool that does it.

In short, you should never trust the information you get from the client. Basic security. Live with it. People who choose to not tell you where they came to your site from are 100% entitled to do so, even if you are angry at them for doing it.

Only you didn't even bother to find out what's going on, and vented your anger at a *tool*. Kinda like blaming the knife for cutting yourself - only you weren't even hurt in the first place.

Maybe you really should get a habit of waiting a few minutes before you rush to do something, like snap at poor programmers who had a misfortune to write a tool you didn't like - or like posting here.
Permalink ping? 
August 26th, 2005
No, see, spoofing referrer information is not necessary to protect a user from ads.

Even if a user wants that protection (and that's fine with me!), why not blank out the referrer data? Why insert your own website's URL?

Because you want ADVERTISING, that's why. It's a lame attempt to boost their pagerank by getting their URL linked on a site's statistics page. Granted, I could filter them out case by case, or I could take my statstics page offline or password protect it, but the fact remains that this is referral spam. The fact that it's not a bot hitting a bunch of sites but rather their end-user software inserting a URL into their user's referrer data is irrelevant. The effect is the same.

6 of one, half dozen of the other. Spoofing the referrer data sent by X number of clients so that it displays YOUR site's URL is SPAM, dude. Period.

If the honest intention is some sort of protection (though I fail to see how this protects anyone) of the user, then the referral field could just as easily be made blank. With a URL in there, it's an advertisement.
Permalink muppet 
August 26th, 2005
And for clarity, let me restate:

I don't CARE if the user protects their referrer data so that I don't know where they came from. That's FINE.

Filling my (and others') logs up with referrer spam is not fine.
Permalink muppet 
August 26th, 2005
...or you could tell Google not to index your statistics page, or to ignore links on it, etc., etc.
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 26th, 2005
Mat -

Absolutely right. But that would be in response to LAME ASS REFERRAL SPAMMERS LIKE ADMUNCHER.

:-)
Permalink muppet 
August 26th, 2005
Muppet,

How is this, so called, refferer spam, any different from the Tommy Hilfiger logo on my shirt or the red Levi tab on my jeans?
Permalink Geert-Jan Thomas 
August 26th, 2005
Geert -

Because the Tommy Hilfiger logo on your shirt doesn't pad search engine results, rendering them useless.
Permalink muppet 
August 26th, 2005
Isn't it the changing of refferral information that influences the search result and not the data it was changed into?
Btw, brands and logo's do alter the inter-human search results in real life. I think the analogy holds.
Permalink Geert-Jan Thomas 
August 26th, 2005
+++ Isn't it the changing of refferral information that influences the search result and not the data it was changed into?+++

???

SPEAKA DA INGLESE
Permalink muppet 
August 26th, 2005
I'm not a native english speaker, so what?
Pretty cheap, even for you.

Feel free to correct me if I fuck up the language. But please, don't make my linguistic errors part of the argument.

<JOS_obligatory>
Moron!
</JOS_obligatory>
Permalink Geert-Jan Thomas 
August 26th, 2005
The data it was changed into will affect the search result because inserting your website's URL into a bunch of other sites' online referrer statistics (assuming they have such a thing) will pump up your site's google pagerank.

I thought we'd covered this.

Your English syntax was fine, I simply didn't know what the fuck you were talking about.
Permalink muppet 
August 26th, 2005
I know we've covered that, but how is that different from branding the product you've sold like cars and clothing.
Just some free advertising.
Just because it's on the web it's spam?


"SPEAKA DA INGLESE" So I guess you were talking to your self then? ;)
Permalink Geert-Jan Thomas 
August 26th, 2005
It was a joke. Get over it. :-)

In real life, yes, brand name logos and the like might influence your purchasing decision, but when you walk into a given store, you can see everything that's available on the shelves.

When somebody engages in spam like this in order to blanket search engines like google, a better analogy would be someone from Structure taking a bunch of their brand name clothing and standing around in the GAP, jumping in front of customers and waving their arms whenever those customers tried to examine the goods on the shelves.
Permalink muppet 
August 26th, 2005
I'm over it ;)

To finish this discussion:
I think you're giving them too much credit for thinking they were aware of the google effects.
If this brings them any advantage it's caused by the selling of their product so good for them. It's not spamming while trying to sell anything. The spamming is the effect of their sales.

Don't get me wrong though. I agree with you that "the right thing" would have been to blank the referral data. And they were a bunch of assholes when they responded to you. (but I guess you're used to that)
Permalink Geert-Jan Thomas 
August 26th, 2005
Admuncher.. wow cool product. Thanks for posting the link!
Permalink Marketing plan: Get muppet riled up so we can market to JOS 
August 26th, 2005
How does google pick up your web server logs? Doesn't admuncher just mask your refferal URL to each web server?
Permalink Old Greek C++ Monkey 
August 26th, 2005
admuncher replaces your true referrer URL with 'www.admuncher.com' by default when that feature is turned on.

I've already explained above how this games Google.
Permalink muppet 
August 26th, 2005
or maybe I didn't

If a site's statistics logs are online, then the referrer spoofed by the software will show up on that page with a link to their site. Usually this is a recipricol link and it's no harm done (when the referring URL actually has a link to your site on it) but often the referrer is spoofed, as in this case, where the offending site gets a link to their site for nothing, and an improved pagerank on Google.
Permalink muppet 
August 26th, 2005
Won't someone think of the children?
Permalink ronk! 
August 26th, 2005
Well they deleted the thread from their public forum.

Apparently honest critique of their application has no place in their customer community.
Permalink muppet 
August 26th, 2005
> Won't someone think of the children?

These days they'd probably be arrested if they did.
Permalink  
August 29th, 2005

This topic was orginally posted to the off-topic forum of the
Joel on Software discussion board.

Other topics: August, 2005 Other topics: August, 2005 Recent topics Recent topics