Harvard University researcher Ben Edelman has released a new report this week accusing Yahoo Inc. of click fraud. His report raises a troubling question whether the same abusive system Edelman says he found at Yahoo exists at Google and other major search engines.
What's happening is Yahoo is selling its ads to marketing firms, which distribute the Yahoo ads unscrupulously via adware, a method to secretly track someone's Web wanderings, then offer up related pop-up ads.
Some observers feel what Yahoo's doing is a common practice among search engines, so, in theory, the allegations against Yahoo would easily translate to Google and other major search engines.
This is the second time Edelman reported on such practice at Yahoo, the last time was in August. As it did then, Yahoo heartily defends its advertising system.