Yep, it’s that time of the month again. And I don’t mean that your wife or girlfriend is going to be grouchy and moody – I am referring to something far more irritating: The time of the month when all of the “make money online” blogs start posting about how much money they earned last month.
For many, that time of the month is a fun and joyous occasion. Prancing from blog to blog, reading the stats and numbers in awe, thinking to themselves “one day.. one day“. But of all of those “guru’s”, how many do you really trust? How many seem honest? How many of them have you even heard of? (how many were published as Adsense Success Stories 🙂 ? ) How do you know that those stats and numbers are real?
Many times bloggers will post screen-shots to prove their earnings. I’m sure that when you look at those screenshots you look for obvious signs of photochopping, and if you don’t see any obvious copy&paste marks you assume it’s real… right? Well guess what boys and girls, there is an easier better way to fake your stats that I’ve seen posted in a few blogs and on WickedFire in the last few weeks that makes it virtually impossible to spot a fake!
I’m not going to give a tutorial on how to fake your stats, but I will tell you that all you need is Firefox, a free Firefox plug-in, a calculator and about 45 seconds of free time on your hands. To show you how real and undetectable these fake stats can be, take a look at my Yahoo earnings (I dont use YPN anymore, so the stats are low):
Now here are those same stats 2 minutes later, after some creative alteration. Would you be able to tell that these stats are not real? Note, I did not use a calculator, so the numbers don’t add-up. Double-checking math is about the only way to spot a fake made this way:
Zoom in all you like, you will not find any evidence of Photochopping because the changes are actually made in the HTML. About the only way to spot one of these fakes is if the numbers do not add up, or if there is some other mistake like a missing % (as in my example).
I know you’re asking yourself “Rand, please, tell me, how can I prevent being hoaxed like this?“. And here’s my answer: Take every post about how much money someone has earned with a bag of salt. Do you know this blogger? Do you know how/where his or her earnings come from, or is the source of their earnings some big nebulous secret? Does this blogger have advertisements plastered all over his or her blog? Is this person motivated to trick you into thinking they are bigger or better than they really are in the hope that you’ll click on their ads or sign up for something under one of their affiliate links – or are there no advertisements in the blog at all, meaning this blogger is just trying to help others?
It all boils down to trust. After following a particular blogger for a few months you usually get a feel for what he or she is about, where their earnings come from, and whether or not you can trust them.
So with all that being said, who are some of the bloggers that you trust?