BusinessWeek's cover story about click fraud has lots of good and fresh reporting on the subject. Not sure I go along with the conclusion, though. In the last paragraph, the story quotes a marketing professor who predicts that continued fraud is going to "scare away the further development of the Internet as an advertising medium."

I think that's a bit dire. Yes, click fraud is a serious problem. It will push more research will into fraud detection. This will lead to further development of Internet advertising technology, a more sophisticated understanding of network dynamics, and new services. Those companies that do a better job of providing clean results will be able to charge a premium. In the meantime, advertisers are happy to use click fraud for leverage to wrest refunds and other concessions from the search engines.

The other question (which the story didn't cover): Will the menace of click fraud on the Internet send more advertising scurrying back to papers and magazines? Hmmm. I'll keep quiet and listen to your thoughts.

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal. LEARN MORE