Monkey Boys

Stephen Yagielowicz
For the legitimate operator in our industry, there's no greater threat than that posed from within, by the misguided, or worse yet, uncaring, actions of the monkey boy...

"Laugh while you can, monkey-boy!" The memorable quote by "Lord John Whorfin" in the 1984 sci-fi movie cult classic "Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension" has been with me since I first saw this film at the local theatre, some 20 years ago...

During these past decades, I've come to label the perpetrators of overt acts of stupidity as "Monkey Boys." You know the type of person I mean: you can regularly see their foolish antics on "reality" shows such as "Cops" – or the nightly news. In extreme cases, their demise is predicated by a statement such as "Don't worry..." or "Watch THIS!" That Australian "Croc Hunter" guy on TV, the one who's always provoking dangerous, wild animals – grabbing 'em by the tail and such – is a perfect example of a monkey boy...

There are other types of behavior beyond the merely foolish that can land you squarely in the monkey boy camp. Little kids who excitedly run around screaming after having too much sugar are clearly included, and in the "too much information" department, I've been known to yell out "I'm gettin' my monkey boy on!!!" whilst unleashing the full fury of "the Polish pile driver" on my beautiful wife, Dawn. This type of monkey boy is defined by his excessive energy.

Another type, however, is defined by his willingness to execute all sorts of shady schemes in an attempt to make a buck, or avoid responsibility for his actions...

Unfortunately for the legitimate operators in our industry, the online adult entertainment industry tends to attract more than its fair share of these personalities. While I could care less if some kid with a TGP gets his ass bit off by a crocodile while climbing over the fence at the zoo in a misguided attempt to "impress" his girlfriend (of course, that would make great video!), I do care when this character mixes his "I don't give a fuck!" attitude with his business ethics (or lack thereof).

While I'm not pointing the finger at anyone in particular, a few of our recent message board threads and some private conversations have provided some good examples of what I'm talking about:

Billing Fraud
One of the most serious (and common) offenses committed by monkey boys is in the area of billing fraud. Some of this results from smaller players trying to "get around" VISA fees. Rather than pony up the $750, they jump from no-name IPSP to no-name IPSP, listening to the billing service's hype, and trusting their cash flow to often shady third-party billing systems that may in fact be run by other monkey boys, preying on their own kind.

Another example from the boards involves schemes designed to circumvent PayPal's "no adult" policy. Putting up a "donation" button instead of a "subscription" button and then trying to justify the fact that folks made "donations," and you in turn "rewarded their generosity" by allowing them to access your site's members area – but you weren't "selling access" – is simply lame.

While this type of behavior often only hurts the Webmaster, other types of billing fraud such as deceptive marketing practices, over billing, fraudulent transactions using stolen credit cards, and even hiding the "cancel" link, impact the consumer and result in the kind of complaints that drive VISA to charge a fee, and Congress / FTC / DOJ / et al, to scrutinize us further.

Webmaster Fraud
Another type of monkey boy is the fellow who feels the need to cheat those who are trying to help him. Case in point is the dishonest gallery submitter. Rather than focus on building a clean gallery that will convert and then playing by the rules, this cheater changes his pages, installs harmful scripts, redirects traffic, and tosses visitors into pop-up hell after having his page listed in good faith by the TGP owner.

These practices rarely hurt the fraudulent gallery submitter who is banned or blacklisted (but simply comes back with a new free email account and free-hosted gallery), but they do hurt the TGP owner who has to spend extra time and money fighting these bogus submitters, all while losing repeat visitors who blame the TGP, not the gallery, for the bullshit they're encountering.

Perhaps even more common is the disappearing "reciprocal" link. The link is there, proudly displayed in a prime spot when the linked site checks, but once listed by them, is nowhere to be found.

Sponsors who "shave," Webmasters who send bogus clicks and sign-ups, dickheads who put "Teletubbies" in their META tags, spammers who use forged headers, the list (sadly) goes on and on...

These examples all show a profound disrespect for common human decency and of one's "peers." Things about life that you should have learned from your mother, or at least in kindergarten if no where else, but that have been conveniently put aside in the name of turning a profit. All done by monkey boys who don't care about who they hurt, or the future of our industry. Sorry to be so cynical on a Saturday, but there you have it. Smarten up, and play nice (and fair)! ~ Stephen

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