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Saturday, November 11, 2006

Why and how you should careful when clicking on links

A reader of one of my blogs commented: "How does the link thing work? I am new at this and do not want to click on something without first knowing what will happen. (chicken.)". Well, with the amount of phishing going around these days, it is wise to be "chicken" as you may get scammed. I am going to do one thing here. I am going to create a link to my enviromental blog (hoping to get more greenies) althought the link you see is something else.

Important: Your bank account needs verifying. Please log in and confirm your account details at Citibank login page (close new window to get back to this page). Try clicking on the link and see where it takes you. I promise it is only an innocent environmental blog and totally family safe, and is no scam. I hope you will also enjoy reading that environmental blog.

Note that if I happen to be a scammer, I may specially creat a page that mimik Citibank homepage with a login section which will record your user name and password. A wise "chicken" will first hover over the link and look at the taskbar at the bottom of the page. The actual URL for the link will be displayed there. This is for FireFox and Internet Explorer. For FireFox, an additional aid for security is if you ever land on a secure site like Citibank, the address bar background will be colored yellow, otherwise it will be just the normal white background. This is an additional reason for IE users to get FireFox (close new window to get back to this page). Try hovering your mouse over the "Citibank login page" link and observe what you see. Also, if you are using FireFox, notice that the address bar background color is white and not yellow as it should be for a secure bank login page like Citibank and should alert you that it there is something not right.

For Opera, when you hover your mouse over the link, a "pop-up" will appear to show the actual URL for the landing page of the link.

If you want to learn about how to make clickable links, read post How to make clickable hyperlinks (click "BACK" button to get back to this page).

If you are interested in the HTML for the "Citibank login page", look at the code in the box below:
<a href="" target="_blank">Citibank login page</a>


  1. Hi Peter

    For a moment there you had me soooo worried. This past weekend I finally managed to unravel the mysteries of creating text links to my first affiliate account and went a little "linkmad".

    When I started to read your post, I saw all my hard work go out of the window but thanks to your excellent info I am learning more every day.

    A question on the subject of links, how many links (text links in a post) are too many?

    I have a craft blog, so naturally I have a wide variety of tools and materials mentioned in my posts and I prefer using text links for my affiliate account

    Any suggestions or advice on this question would be appreciated.

    Keep up the good work.

  2. "A question on the subject of links, how many links (text links in a post) are too many?"

    Ah! That is a very difficult question to answer because the population is not uniform. You get all kinds. Some are very sensitive and wouldn't like to visit sites with too many ads (text links are less of a problem). Others are not bothered as long as they find the information they are seeking or if the site is very interesting and informative. I for one do not mind the contextual Google AdSense ads as they are related to the content of the sites I visit. Who knows, one day I may come across an ad that offer me what I am seeking. This is one of the reasons I participate in the AdSense Program and the readers of my blog may see relevant ads that might be helpful. I am also an Amazon associate, and in some of my posts, I put their links to products relevant to the content of that post at the bottom of the page. I don't normally put more than 4, sometimes I only have 1, or even none. Amazon is more work because I use text link to books that may go out of print, unlike AdSense which you can practically paste and forget. Don't know if this answer your question, but I wouldn't put too much that may put off some visitors.

    Adsense Alert

  3. Hi Peter

    Thank you. I will make a note to update the product and book links regularly.

  4. Forgot to add that Amazon have ads other than text links to specific products. You can also have ads that are served accoding to "categories" or even tje Omakase ads which are served accoding to what Amazon reckon as relevant to your site content. If I remembered correctly, I have queried Adsense if Amazon Omakase ads are OK with put together ads and there replied it is OK. If not sure, no harm contaacting them again if, as it seem from your lastpost, you are referring to Amazon ads. I think these are also practically paste and forget. The only reason why I haven't used Omakase ads is because at the time I last check, the format they offer wouldn't fit my site. Also, they have now Amazon store which are also text links, and may be paste and forget. I have put Amazon store on some of my blogs, can't remember which. They are not very obtrusive.

  5. I had a look at the Omakase ads and maybe with the wide variety of products and materials mentioned in my site, it may be a better option for me to use it, but will have a look again at the format.

    once again, thanks for the info.

  6. Your blog is usfull for me Thank
    you.My blog is
    My adsense earnings are so low.
    Can you give me advice.My email
    address is
    help me.

  7. For you to earn from Adsense and other things like affliate, you need traffic, lots of it. To build traffic to your blog, read How to build traffic to your blog.
    You will also need ads relevant to the content of your blog. Read post How to get ads more relevant to your site content.
    And AdSense recommend you blend the ads to the color or your site. Read post How to blend your ads to the color of your site.
    Also the section above the fold is valuable real estate, and you should maximise the use of that section of your blog. Does the banner for Friendster bring you any income? If not remove it.

  8. Anonymous3:59 PM

    The Amazon ads only pay you if the visitor actually buys the product, am I correct?

  9. Peter,
    Found your site and have a question re: why my blog won't send my posts to my Google Groups account or it inconsistently sends it to be moderated first. I have checked my google groups address and it is the same in GG as for my Blogger account. This is a Painting a Day blog where I do a small painting and post it daily to my Blog. Since beginning in December I haven't been able to send my blog post to my Google Groups list. Do you have a basic beginner checklist of what I should try next? I've asked in Google Groups Help site but no luck yet. Thanks for your help and time.

  10. Hi Ann,

    I am trying to digest your question. This is what I think I understand of your problem. You have a blog called painting-daily with Blogger (not because this produced a Not Found error message. You must be hosting the blog yourself at You have set the blogsend address as so that everytime you make a post, it get sent to the google group

    Something like what I described in this post Testing blog post and comment notification to Google group, but for some reason, the notification, which previously was no problem, suddenly couldn't be sent anymore?

    Did I read you correctly? If so, I would suggest you check SETTINGS > COMMENT again because sometimes, Blogger settings can change by itself. It has happened to me before, and when I explained this to someone on the Blogger Help group, the person confirmed that was what happened. Why? Ask Ghost Buster.

    Peter a.k.a. enviroman
    Enviroman Says

  11. When I use HTML code to create links and type in it Word and then post as a reply to a comment, the code shows up and not the link. Why?

  12. Hi Usiko,

    Word is text and not HTML. You wnat <a> to show as links, you got to save it as HTML format and send it as such.

    Peter (Blog*Star 2006 and 2007)
    Testing Blogger Beta (now New Blogger)


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