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VPN Users Could Be Depriving Pirate Sites of Ad Revenue

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VPN Users Could Be Depriving Pirate Sites of Ad Revenue


With website blocking becoming more prevalent around the world, more and more users are turning to VPNs to regain access. However, according to the operator of one of the world's largest pirate sites, some advertising agencies consider the traffic as worthless.


For more than a decade, copyright holders around the world have pushed Internet service providers to block ‘pirate’ sites.


While users in the United States are yet to experience any blocking on copyright grounds, elsewhere – particularly in Europe – the site blocking phenomenon is in full swing.


Indeed, according to a recent overview by the Motion Picture Association, almost 4,000 websites are blocked by ISPs across 31 countries. The number of domains blocked is more than double that amount, in excess of 8,000 worldwide.


While the action is seen as effective at preventing direct access to sites, plenty of workarounds exist. Alternative ‘pirate’ domains regularly appear, along with mirrors, clones and the rising use of Tor and, of course, VPNs.


Interestingly, however, we received correspondence from the operator of a major ‘pirate’ site this week that indicated that VPN-based traffic is undesirable because it is considered almost worthless by advertising networks.


“Pirate sites need money to operate,” he explained. “Having more VPN users accessing the site doesn’t equal more money.”


According to the operator, ad agencies frown upon such traffic. Instead, they prefer traffic that is easily categorized into geographic regions, with some countries’ traffic being considered more valuable than others.


Users visiting sites from places such as the US, UK, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, and Australia, are considered more valuable than those visiting from India and China, for example. 


The site operator says that advertisers pay for his traffic on a geographic basis. An example list of geocodes published by Maxmind shows a sample, with the United States listed as ‘US’, United Kingdom as ‘GB’, and Canada as ‘CA’. However, at the top of the list is A1, which stands for Anonymous Proxy.


“Advertisers pay per [geocode] and do campaigns per [geocode]. VPNs are marked with GEO A1 which is outside the scope of those tiers thus no one gets paid for those,” he explained.


Another site operator working in a similar niche told us that in his experience, payment for VPN traffic is patchy. However, he agreed with the overall sentiment.


“It all depends on the network to be honest. I have worked with a few networks before that don’t even show a popup if you’re using a VPN,” he explained.


Of course, the A1 code isn’t just limited to VPNs. TOR also comes under that category and that traffic is frowned up too.


“No ad agency pays for TOR traffic,” we were told. “There are special flags for TOR , anonymous proxies, VPN, dedicated servers, VPS servers. It’s really easy to monitor those networks and changes to them. Everything is public anyway.”


IP2Location sells access to a database for $799 which claims to be able to detect VPNs, proxies, and bots. It also offers a demo, which allows the user to enter an IP address and discover whether it falls into the above categories. We tested it with a diverse range of VPN servers and the tool identified the VPN every single time.


So while visitors may be able to unblock ‘pirate’ sites with VPNs, TOR, and similar tools, it’s clear that many advertisers aren’t partial to this kind of traffic. There are other more creative ways to monetize these visitors through various schemes but for the large site in question, they’re more of a burden.


“More visits, more server load for 0$,” he concluded.




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If your vpn shows up as a proxy it's crap anyways if it's any good it want


Selection 005

Some vpn have built in adblockers and if a user turns that on it may cause them to lose money.   A bad vpn  may would cause it but a good vpn could cause them to earn more because they pay more for traffic from North America  . but mostly what is causing them to lose money are adblockers and  kodi blocking there ads .Who in there right mind vist a shady pirate site without a Adblocker nowadays ? They  the ones who took the risk to try and make money on piracy ,google chrome even blocks there ads in 2019 .Pirates don't care they  may complain  for a day or two if a site closes but  they will just migrate to some other site that does know how to make money off it if they close  shop. Pirate sites don't care about there users ether it's like when openload stop paying per download to uploaders  they dropped it,  some sites don't have any choices for free users anymore and some replaced it with sites not as good to make money. So why should we care about them? If you use use torrent sites and you don't use a vpn or some other way to get around it.you take a risk of being fined or your internet being disconnected  the people who run these sites never cared if you get busted  they only worried about themselves.


Pirate sites could vanish  off the internet and people would just pay for there media like we did before  the internet and it would not really matter . People just pirate because it's and option take the option away and people will be  just fine without  it,  just like they was 1000s of years before we had and internet. Digital media is nothing we have to have  the world was just fine without it for 1000s of years.   people are just spoiled before the internet i still had TV . Music  and Movies i could watch we just had to make due with what we could afford or record offline.  Pirate sites could vanish  off the internet and people will still pirate on the internet believe it  or not . Anyone who been on the internet  since the early 2000s or longer and is a pirate knows you don't need a  website to pirate.    People migrated from pirating from inside there download clients  to websites it use to not be about making money it was all about sharing, I still have programs i can pirate with  that are pure p2p that don't depend on a Pirate site with links. :P

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