Guess Whose Ads are Supporting “Piracy” Sites?

Okay, we’ll tell you, cuz we’re those kinds of guys: Google and Yahoo, that’s who. Hypocrisy? Carelessness? Does the reason matter? Does the deed itself even matter?

Read on:

ninjapoodlesReport: Google & Yahoo May Be BFFs With Hollywood, But Both Place Ads On Piracy Sites – by Mary Beth Quick (Consumerist.Com)

Google and Yahoo might crow about supporting the entertainment industry, but a new report says that hasn’t stopped the two Internet giants from placing ads on sites with pirated movies, TV shows and music.  The report looked at analysis of which sites have the most copyright infringement notices against them and found that Google and Yahoo are in the top 10 ad networks that support major piracy sites. Ruh roh.

USC’s Annenberg Innovation Lab issued the report , and the Los Angeles Times says that while Yahoo hasn’t responded, Google called the report’s findings “mistaken.”

“To the extent [the study] suggests that Google ads are a major source of funds for major pirate sites, we believe it is mistaken,” a Google spokesperson said. “Over the past several years, we’ve taken a leadership role in this fight. The complexity of online advertising has led some to conclude, incorrectly, that the mere presence of any Google code on a site means financial support from Google.”

It’s the first part of a monthly occurrence that the Lab’s director hopes will highlight how rampant the support of piracy sites by major brands’ advertising dollars is. Maybe some of those companies will decide not to shell out the big bucks.

“Whenever we talk to a brand about the fact that their ads are all over the pirate sites, they’re like, ‘Oh, how did that happen?’” the director said. “We thought it would be easier if they knew what ad networks were putting ads on pirate sites — so they could avoid them.”

Google and Yahoo are in high-powered company, according to the Lab, which used Google’s own Transparency Report to come up with a list of other offenders:

The list of ad networks includes Openx, a Pasadena company that was backed by AOL Ventures and describes itself as a leader in digital and mobile ad technology; Google and its advertising platform, DoubleClick; Yahoo and its ad exchange, Right Media; and Quantcast, a San Francisco firm that also places ads on sites owned by such major media companies as NBCUniversal and Viacom.

So far one big name, Levi’s, has taken action after the Lab showed the company it had ads on file-sharing sites, which could mean others will follow suit when facing similar evidence.

“When our ads were running unbeknownst to us on these pirate sites, we had a serious problem with that,” said Gareth Hornberger, senior manager of global digital marketing for Levi’s. “We reached out to our global ad agency of record, OMD, and immediately had them remove them…. We made a point, moving forward, that we really need to take steps to avoid having these problems again.”

The Lab’s director has a personal reason for fighting piracy in the entertainment industry, as he claims his late friend Levon Helm was forced to go back to touring after piracy made it impossible for him to exist on royalties from his music.

Perhaps this is a better way to stop or at least lessen the effects of piracy — going after the almighty dollar — instead of trying to censor the entire Internet with legislation like the failed SOPA and PIPA measures.

Invisible Mikey: Head Full of Strange

… and happy to share.

I saw King Kong (1933) as a young child – on TV

Thanks to a couple of comments on the last post, I’ve been thinking about some of the truly bizarre television shows that knock around in my memory.  This is no attempt to be comprehensive.  It’s just some links to oddities I watched at one time or other.


Before I started school, I had no social context for TV content.  I liked comedy, old movies, weird cartoons and what was then called “educational television”.  The cartoons were usually ones made decades earlier, intended for projection before movies.  As for other shows, I preferred ones with in-jokes, even if I didn’t understand them.


My taste for the absurd cross-pollinated back to TV viewing once I began going to movies on my own.  My parents finally bought a color set around 1965.


TV went kind of bipolar in this decade.  Beautiful and unusual things were happening in American culture, but television kept broadcasting retro-styled versions of what was occurring in the real world.

The 1980s and Beyond :

I spent a lot more time working than watching from this point on.  I was generally only able to see things that showed late at night, or what I taped and purchased for later viewing.

 —and that’s enough out of me (and YouTube).  Gotta go to work.

But, I have to wonder about YOUR kids.  They are growing up already having seen things like THIS:

TVWriter™ sends big thanks to Invisible Mikey’s Very Visible Blog

LB’s Favorite TVWriter™ Posts of 2012

..Because it’s my site, and I can brag if I wanna.

Don Julio 1942 Tequila Anejo
Best “intoxicant” I’ve ever been intoxicated by

With no further ado, here are, not the most visited TVWriter™ posts, nor necessarily the best, but the ones I enjoyed reading – or writing – the most. The posts that seemed to me to be the most open, honest, and helpful looks at being a television writer, or which I just plain got the most enjoyment out of.

So if you missed these suckers, click and read, kids. Click and read

In no particular order:

FWIW Department: The good news as I see it is that none of the above are on our “Least Read Posts of 2012” list. The not-so-good news is that none of them are on the “Most read Posts of 2012” list either.

And, okay, since you asked, my favorite turns out to be the shortest item listed above, and one of the shortest on TVWriter™. And, no, I didn’t write it. That honor goes to some dood named Anil

Hey, Anil, next time you’re in the neighborhood – or the country – c’mon over and I’ll open a bottle for us to – hehe – finish.

6 Harsh Truths That Will Make You a Better Person

Um…how does a humor site like Cracked.Com know all this? Even our Incredibly Difficult to Please Boss, AKA LB, says this article is right on…especially about showbiz. (You’ll have to excuse him; all he @#$! knows is showbiz, but he knows it very well.)


by David Wong

2013, motherfuckers. Yeah! LET’S DO THIS.


Feel free to stop reading this if your career is going great, you’re thrilled with your life and you’re happy with your relationships. Enjoy the rest of your day, friend, this article is not for you. You’re doing a great job, we’re all proud of you. So you don’t feel like you wasted your click, here’s a picture of Lenny Kravitz wearing a gigantic scarf.


For the rest of you, I want you to try something: Name five impressive things about yourself. Write them down or just shout them out loud to the room. But here’s the catch — you’re not allowed to list anything you are (i.e., I’m a nice guy, I’m honest), but instead can only list things that you do (i.e., I just won a national chess tournament, I make the best chili in Massachusetts). If you found that difficult, well, this is for you, and you are going to fucking hate hearing it. My only defense is that this is what I wish somebody had said to me around 1995 or so.

#6. The World Only Cares About What It Can Get from You…

#5. The Hippies Were Wrong…

#4. What You Produce Does Not Have to Make Money, But It Does Have to Benefit People…

#3. You Hate Yourself Because You Don’t Do Anything…

#2. What You Are Inside Only Matters Because of What It Makes You Do…

#1. Everything Inside You Will Fight Improvement…

Read the sordid details about – yikes! – life

PORTLANDIA Tells Us What It Thinks About Spoilers

…Specifically, about people who complain about them.

Oh, and those who the complainers complain to.



Portlandia Spoiler Alert