Web sites prey on rivals' stores

CNET: Web sites prey on rivals' stores

"One e-tailer that's been bitten is 1-800-Flowers.com. When certain Web surfers visit the site to browse for bouquets, a pop-up ad appears for $10 off at chief rival FTD.com. The same sort of thing happens at AmericanAirlines.com, where a Delta Air Lines promotion is waiting in the wings."

For 1-800-Flowers.com to get rid of the FTD ad they'd supposedly have to pay more for the spot than FTD is. Uhh, isn't this extortion?

You shouldn't have to pay to keep other people from putting ads on your site or your building or anything. Thankfully it appears you have to be using IE/craptive-x and some music-stealing software like AudioGalaxy to be affected by this. So music-buying, Mozilla-using, selectively cookie-refusing people like myself won't have to put up with this crap.

Written on August 7, 2001