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What is LJ doing to my links? Part 6
halloween, witch, want an apple?
shatterstripes
One last thread to pull on.

Previously, I noted that outboundlink.net was putting a plaintext affiliate ID into links to Target, rather than a cryptic number like it was doing to Amazon.

AFID=Performics_Driving%20Revenue%20Inc

Now, Driving Revenue, I'm already 99% sure, is who owns and operates outboundlink.net. Having the main function in the Javascript be called "DrivingRevenue()" is kind of a strong link, as is having their site served from the same IP as outbound.

But who's "Performics"?

Wikipedia:
Performics is a search engine marketing, data feed marketing, and online lead generation company owned by the French advertising holding company Publicis Groupe (Euronext Paris: FR0000130577). [...] Performics is based in Chicago, Illinois [...] Founded (as Dynamic Trade) as an Affiliate marketing company in 1998


"Affiliate maketing" is... um... what they're still doing, it seems.

DrivingRevenue:
We are conveniently located in the West Loop of Chicago


Interestingly enough, Google owns Performics - they'd gotten bought by DoubleClick, who Google bought. Google owns part of Performics - their old affiliate network division - but Publicis, a French transnational advertising company, owns the rest. And is mentioned on Performics' site.

So is DR a subsidary of Performics? I dunno. Digging through all the marketroid speak on their site is making my brain hurt. But like any good SEO company, Performics is on Twitter. Let's ask 'em directly!

And all of them are fronts for Interzone Incorporated!

Many thanks for the sleuthing!

They pretty much are, aren't they? In a metaphorical fashion. I mean, seo/marketing folks are kinda people I think of as the enemy - they game loopholes in search engine algorithms to get their stuff in front of your eyes when you're looking for something else.

Yeah, this definitely isn't an example of white-hat SEO stuff, let's say.

Except for the ones that are fronts for Trak.

(smoke trak cigarettes. they like you. trak like any you. any trak like you)

so once again Google is angling to dominate the ad revenue via net?

great detective work!

To be precise, Google seems to own part of Performics. Dunno which half this is.

Wikipedia:
The controversial[6] search engine marketing and optimization part of Performics was acquired by Publicis in 2008, after the purchase of DoubleClick by Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) had been finalized.[7] The affiliate network part of DoubleClick Performics remained with Google and was re-branded Google Affiliate Network.


performics.com mentions Publicis (a huge French advertising holding company) as their owner. Mm. I mis-spoke and will correct this in my post.


Lovin' your tenacity on this. You are fierce!

"@egypturnash No, the old Performics affiliate network is now Google Affiliate Network (GAN). Thanks!" [*]

So -- assuming they're telling the truth, which I have no reason to doubt since this is probably easy for anyone with knowledge of the industry to verify -- does this mean Google really is being evil?

Possibly! I suggested that Performics have a coffee with DR and ask why their name still shows up in DR's linkjacks. It should be easy; they're both in Chicago after all.

Q: "Hey @Performics, is drivingrevenue.com your subsidiary? Their linkjacking code is pretty sloppy."

A: "@egypturnash No, the old Performics affiliate network is now Google Affiliate Network (GAN). Thanks!"

Does that mean this is *entirely* Google's doing, after all?