Misleading Ad: Twitter is Hiring

Drudge Report allows questionable "Twitter" ad to run on site

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Did you know that Twitter was hiring? Apparently, you could be making $75/hr from the comfort of your own home! I saw the ad on the Drudge Report so it has to be legit, right? I mean a site that is the one of the largest news portals on the Internet wouldn’t advertise misleading, dare I say spammy items, to their loyal audience… would they?

Unfortunately, I recently saw the following ad atop the popular Drudge Report. The ad is without a doubt pulling at the heartstrings of a recession stricken America where hundreds of thousands are currently unemployed.

Fraudulent Twitter is Hiring ads

If you’ll notice the Drudge Report asks you to "Support The DrudgeReport; Visit Our Advertisers". Shouldn’t The Drudge Report hold itself up to a higher advertiser standard … especially since they ask you to click on it? Tell us what you think.

Support The DrudgeReport

Fraudulent Twitter is Hiring ads

Upon clicking the ad it takes you to newspaper-ish looking article, that has no mention of Twitter hiring mind you, but instead is a story about Mike Steadman, and what do you know… he’s from where I live! Mike claims, "I get paid about $25 for every link I post on Twitter and I get paid every week… I make around $10500 a month right now". Good going Mike!

Oh, and at the bottom of the page it even says "Twitter is in no way associated with this website."

Fake newspaper site

That’s some serious cabbage Mike, too bad it’s painfully fake and you’re probably a stock image from somewhere.

I viewed the source of the page and found out that the page is using a simple script to pull the Geo IP location to make it appear as if someone close to you is getting rich. Below you’ll see the same page as above but now Mike is from Washington, D.C. If you can’t trust Mike, whom can you trust these days?

Fake newspaper site

This fake online newspaper, or whatever it’s supposed to be, is nothing more than a funnel which is attempting to get your credit card information. The moneyback guarantee for "Easy Twitter Cash" made me chuckle, remember the ad that lead me here said that I could be making $75/hr now check this out…

"After six days we will charge you $84.79 for the first month, and a lower discounted rate of $49.87 every month from the signup date thereafter until you cancel. Additionally, you will be charged $6.82/month for a Health Tracker subscription."

Seeing these ads on The DrudgeReport got me thinking about a couple of things…

1.) Has Twitter been too relaxed with their trademark/brand?
2.) Can Twitter do anything at this point to better control use of their brand by outsiders?
3.) Shouldn’t publishers, e.g. The DrudgeReport, step in and ask that such a misleading ad like Twitter Hiring be removed from their sites advertising rotation?

1.) Has Twitter been to relaxed?

That’s easy, the answer is yes. Twitter has been extremely easy going with their trademark/brand. Almost every 3rd party app/service has either Twitter, a bird, or the word tweet in the title. For example Twitterrific, TweetDeck, CoTweet, Tweetmeme… etc.

Below is an official response from Twitter about their trademarking of the word "Tweet"…

"We have applied to trademark Tweet because it is clearly attached to Twitter from a brand perspective but we have no intention of "going after" the wonderful applications and services that use the word in their name when associated with Twitter. In fact, we encourage the use of the word Tweet. However, if we come across a confusing or damaging project, the recourse to act responsibly to protect both users and our brand is important."

Social Media commentator Andy Beal had the following to say about Twitter trademarking the term "tweet" …

"I’m not a trademark attorney–if you are, correct me if I am wrong–but if you register a trademark, aren’t you obliged to police it? I was under the impression that if you didn’t prevent others from using your trademark, you risked losing the protections granted by its registration.

If that is the case, maybe third-party application developers should be worried after all.

In addition, the above sentiment is how Twitter feels about the situation today, but what about in five years from now? What if it’s acquired by Google or News Corp–and they have a more stringent policy on the use of their trademarks?"

2.) Can Twitter gain control?

Alexander Macgillivray

I do believe that Twitter can gain control of their trademark/brand, but it’s going to be difficult. Twitter might finally be on the right track with the recent rumored hiring of Alexander Macgillivray, who was Google’s associate general counsel for products and intellectual property. Will Alex bring to Twitter Google’s aggressive approach to protecting trademarks?

My guess is we’ll see a new Twitter before the end of the year, one that doesn’t just roll over.

3.) Publishers need to step up, and are they at fault?

The Drudge Report has 12 million unique visitors monthly, according to the media kit. They also certainly serve a lot of ad impressions to their readers, over 669 million in the past 31 days! Shouldn’t the Drudge Report be concerned with the quality and truthfulness of the ads displayed on their site?

The company that handles the advertising for The Drudge Report is Intermarkets, Inc. The following is a sentence from their website about "corporate integrity"…

"At Intermarkets we are committed to conducting business with integrity, building valuable win-win relationships and providing exceptional service."

With the above sentence in mind, Intermarkets may want to re-look at the "Twitter is Hiring" ad? Twitter isn’t hiring here, there is no Lexington Reporter publication, my Google search of Mike Steadman came up empty, the comments on the article don’t appear genuine, and there definitely is no affiliation with Twitter and the fine print mention of this doesn’t cut it! Oh, and by the way, I would love to meet a real person who makes $10,000 a month placing text ads in their tweets as a result of this program!

So, I guess the real question is… who is to blame for this misleading "Twitter is Hiring" ad? Is it The Drudge Report for not stepping in and saying pull it – or is it Intermarkets for even running the ad in their network? Tell us what you think.

Misleading Ad: Twitter is Hiring
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  • Maria

    I just read this cuz i wanted to see if the ad was legit.. how could they post something on Drudge that is not legit?

    • Guest

      Because Drudge is not legit… duh…

  • http://www.bdv-unix-skills.co.uk vince stevenson

    Disappointing that Twitter don’t follow up this sort of behaviour themselves. Hopefully, this blog post will alert them. Well done. Rgds Vince

    • Twitter Bird

      I agree, Twitter needs to be pro-active in regards to their brand.

      • Devin

        who gives a flying-f@ck if a company protects their brand? i love how people actually act concerned with this issue as if anybody had a stake in it but some rich company. like seriously, you are seriously concerned with brand protection? are you up late at night worrying about brand protection? give me a break, this is about the least important issue in the entire world right now.

  • http://superdealshop.com Bryan Quinn

    Great article highlighting the usual spammy scams and the ubiquitous scurge that abounds the net.

    • Jeremy Muncy

      Thanks for the kind words about the article Bryan.

      Jeremy Muncy
      Follow me on Twitter twitter.com/jmuncy”>@jmuncy

  • http://www.laokay.com Steve

    Notice they are using smaller ad networks that use big pocket advertisers a lot. Gee ad networks wouldn’t rip off their advertisers by allowing publishers to ask for clicks would they? Google doesn’t.

    Asking for clicks is defrauding the advertisers out of money. Plain and simple.

    I’d never pay somebody to advertise my website or product if they were pushing for people to click on the ads. If my ad was not enough to attract a person to visit my website or buy my products I’d never know because I’d be seeing a lot of traffic and think my product must suck or something. Basically it wouldn’t give anybody a clear picture until they saw that everybody was being asked to click on their ads.

    It’s like the Jehovah’s Witnesses. If they put out literature for free to read like at libraries, or doctor’s offices, etc., people might at least read it, even just to see what it was all about. I mean those things cost money, so why give it to people that only request it?

    Let’s mention that there are billions of people living on this planet and yet only 144,000 are going to heaven? Sounds more like a cult trying to pretend it’s a religion to me. Wouldn’t it suck if you spent your entire life handing out pamphlets only to find out in the end you didn’t make the list because you came up 144,001th?

    • Guest

      I don’t really see the correlation. I do see that you don’t really know about other religions, though.

    • Devin

      haha, I love how this guy thinks that there is a difference between a religion and a cult. what a dumbass.

    • Guest

      I agree with other postings here that I don’t see the relationship to the subject at hand. Jehovah’s Witnesses are a worldwide organization of 7,000,000 who PUBLICLY make literature available to the entire world as EVERYONE knows. If you have chosen this as your best argument, I’m afraid the point has been lost on the readers. You would never find such weak arguments and misinformation used by Jehovahs Witnesses. Your assumptions are flawed because your knowledge base is incorrect. It might appeal to a cult but not to a reasoning person. I am happy to serve the Almighty God Jehovah because as our father and teacher, his standards are the best way to live and he has our best interests at heart. I am happy to listen to him no matter what number I am. I suggest in the future you inform yourself better and chose your analogies more carfully, if you have a point to make. It is better to inform your audience than insult them.
      BTW, our literature is NOT FREE. It is paid for by voluntary contributions. It is distributed “free of charge”. Jesus said “You received free, give free.” And it is distributed in every land of the earth by willing volunteers motivated by love of God and love of neighbour. That is what a true Christian should practice. Our magazines, published monthly, have the greatest distribution of any magazines in the world in vitually every written language. No one else even comes close.
      Foolish people just mocked Jesus. Thinking and caring people not only listened to him but imitated him. Today, we fulfill his prophecy of Matthew 24:14 -“This good news of the Kingdom will be preached IN ALL THE INHABITED EARTH and THEN the end (of human rulership) will come”. It is only good news to those who listen, not those who mock.

  • Kim

    I contacted them. They apologized and said that the ad had been taken down.

    • http://www.blogspot.com Larry

      Who did you contact the ad agency or Drudge Report?

      • Kim

        I contacted Intermarkets..Drudge Reports ad sales company

        • John

          Hi Kim,

          I dig girls who read Drudge. Do you want to chat?

  • http://www.controldatainc.com/tips Agency collection

    The internet is flooded with more bogus advertisings than anywhere else in life. I saw those ads also, but just ignored them. Im amazed at how many people clicks those things and belive it.

  • Susan Coppersmith

    I think that is the big question and big problem. The Drudge Report is legit and people trust them and who they associate with. By allowing Ad Networks to run these kind of misleading ads and maybe even fraudulent ads on their site hurts their reputation. It also hurts the other advertisers who are running in that Ad Network. I was surprised to see Bing Ads running today right after that ad. Microsoft is working hard on their reputation and to run with an Ad Network that is not worrying about their brand.. could be a big step back for them. The B2B community would give them a big thumbs down for sure.

    Susan Coppersmith
    Director of Sales
    iEntry, Inc.

  • Ryan

    I feel like a complete idiot. I hate to admit this, but I fell into the trap of this ad. I never fall for those things as I consider myself fairly web savvy. I followed the link and saw that Mike was from Chesterfield, and was doing fairly well. I read more, then followed through and yes, I put my credit card information in there. Didn’t find out this was fake until I googled Mike Steaman and notice he was from NY and DC.

    Question… What do I do now? What will these guys do with my credit card information? How do I stop any future charges. Was anyone else dumb like me and sign up? Did anything happen?

    Thanks for your help!

    • Lol_TWEETER_u_serious

      Wow…. can’t believe people fall for this shit… sorry but you sort of deserve it if you’re dumb enough to fall for it. I’m gonna make an ad that says “Meecrosoft is Hiring!” Just give us all your bank account info!

  • http://dailybragger.com Tom Guard

    Found this site because I Googled “Twitter Hiring Ad.” I came across the same ad but this time it said “Tweeter” instead of Twitter.

    I can’t believe people sell these systems when all you need to make money with twitter is to do a little research online for free.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/theclickbankprofitsystemreview Clickbank Profit System

    In this particular situation, I would have to say it is DrudgeReport’s fault because under the advertisment it has “Support The DrudgeReport; Visit Our Advertisers”. It is sort of like endorsing whatever the advertiser is promoting. Maybe they should rephrase that.

  • Guest

    …these fake blog ads are showing up for numerous miscellaneous products that are scammish. “Cathy’s Teeth” ad goes to a blog allegedly written by a housewife that – surprise! lives in YOUR area. Same with “Local Housewife Discovers” …How to Flatten Her Belly or …How to Erase Crows Feet, in Seven Days! etc., etc., ad nauseaum.

    Even Dr. Mehmet Oz’s name was used by this ad company as covered by Forbes magazine at http://www.forbes.com/2009/06/15/mehmet-oz-oprah-business-media-resveratrol.html.

    The Better Business Bureau has also put out an alert regarding these fake blog ads schemes. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/shopping_blog/2009/04/facebook-scams-bbb-warns.html.

    Cautionary advice would be to scan the ENTIRE web page including the disclaimers they put way at the bottom of the page in light gray and with several tens of paragraph breaks in between the blog(ad) text and the disclaimer and terms.

    Be very cautious out there people, this ad company in Florida doesn’t give a FF if they mislead you and hurt your wallet with their dihonest dealings.

  • Guest

    Saw the ad today but like someone else already stated it said “Tweeter” and not “Twitter.” Maybe Twitter busted some skulls and whoever’s responsible for it had to change it.

  • devin

    here is a few tips.
    1. all advertisements are nothing but trickery. no company needs to inform you about their product. we all know what is out there and if a product is good people know about it.
    2. there is no easy and legal way to get rich. your best shot is getting lucky at the casino if you want big money fast. if you want to get paid for doing f@ck all then sell something illegal. or invent some crap product and sell it for more than it cost you to make it. or buy other people’s products and sell them for more than you paid for it. this is all businesses do, it doesn’t take a genius.
    3. stop using twitter. go out and talk to people about you life and listen to them talk about theirs. you might actually meet a new friend or significant other. posting about your life online is lame and you are a huge loser if you do it. reading about other people’s lives online is also super lame. and seriously, why would anybody care about you life? if you are lucky in life you will convince a few good friends and a girlfriend/boyfriend to care about your life and that is about it.
    4. if there was some method of getting rich easily then why would somebody sell that method for money? they would just use the method themselves. seriously people, how do you not understand this logic? you don’t even have to know anything to understand this, just some simple logic.

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