Title: Cyber-rigging click-through rates: exploring the ethical dimensions

Authors: Josie Fisher, Ravi Pappu

Addresses: New England Business School, Faculty of Economics, Business and Law, University of New England, Armidale NSW 2351, Australia. ' UQ Business School, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia

Abstract: Click-through rate is considered a very important metric and a key performance indicator of the success of online advertising and is the most frequently used measure to gauge the effectiveness of banner advertising. Marketers also use click-through rates in arriving at performance measurement activities such as the calculation of |customer life time value| and |customer acquisition cost|. Click-through is the second most frequently used banner ad pricing method after cost per thousand impressions. Online advertising is facing a new form of challenge – the artificial inflation of click-through rates. We call this practice |cyber-rigging|. The objective of this paper is to explore the ethical dimensions of cyber-rigging through application of ethical principles and theories.

Keywords: cyber-rigging; online advertising; ethics; banner ads; click-through rates; pay-per-click; click-fraud; ethical issues; e-advertising; internet advertising; performance measurement; pricing; internet fraud.

DOI: 10.1504/IJIMA.2006.008973

International Journal of Internet Marketing and Advertising, 2006 Vol.3 No.1, pp.48 - 59

Available online: 09 Feb 2006 *

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