Yahoo Staffs Up in Click Fraud Prevention

By Kevin Newcomb


March 22, 2007

Yahoo
has taken steps to bolster its click fraud detection and prevention
efforts today, with an executive-level appointment focusing on
marketplace quality.

Reggie
Davis, who has served as an attorney for Yahoo for the past seven
years, has been named the company’s new VP of marketplace quality. His
most recent role was as associate general counsel managing litigation,
including Yahoo’s click fraud litigation. Davis is based in Burbank,
Calif., and will operate within the marketing products division of
Yahoo’s recently-formed Advertiser & Publisher Group, led by Susan
Decker.

"This
is an opportunity for me to get into an area where we’ve shown
leadership in the past, and expect to continue to show leadership in
going forward," Davis said. "I’m especially excited by the commitment
of resources. Previously, I’ve seen a disconnect between how hard the
company is working on these issues and outsiders’ perception. Now we
can help remedy that."

Davis
will be given resources to hire a dedicated staff to focus on
marketplace quality efforts across several product and click protection
teams, which are currently operating independently. His team will focus
on click fraud, traffic quality, network placement and other
marketplace quality issues, including working closely with advertisers
and publishers on quality-related matters.

Davis
will have operational, reporting, and communications functions within
his role, as well as strategic and tactical ones. He will begin by
driving the consolidation of several existing quality efforts at Yahoo,
and creating new teams to address network quality issues.

Davis
stressed the importance of addressing advertiser concerns about click
fraud, which Yahoo has done in the past and will continue to do. He
said the improved geo-targeting controls in the new Panama platform,
which help advertisers block traffic from countries where they believe
invalid clicks are originating, were one of the top requests from
advertisers.

The
next two most frequent requests were for discounted pricing of certain
types of traffic and domain-blocking capabilities, both of which are in
the works and expected to be released to advertisers in coming months.
Quality-based pricing will aim to price traffic in a manner that is
consistent with the quality it delivers to advertisers, so traffic will
be priced at different tiers. Domain-level blocking will allow
advertisers to identify individual domains from which they do not wish
to receive traffic.

Davis
said that Yahoo is planning on continuing down the path it has
undertaken. "We’re focused on the concerns of our advertisers. We’re
really committed to providing visibility, control, and transparency on
behalf of our advertisers. We want to put them in a position to ensure
they’ll be getting quality traffic," he said.


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