Bad Behavior Blocking PayPal Callback

PayPal IPs were being blocked by the Bad Behavior WordPress plugin, this article will discuss what I did to combat the problem.

I’ve been struggling with registration spam on one of my retail websites.  Currently it’s running a shop based on WordPress, so I have access to a plethora of plugins to assist with this issue.  I had been using Stop Spammer Registrations, along with re-Captcha, which only worked for so long.  Somehow the spammers just keep getting through, so I took the next step to fortify with Bad Behavior.

Bad Behavior is a WordPress plugin that helps stop spammers before they even access your site.  To assist the plugin, it makes a call out to the http:BL API, which is available for free.  Once you get the API setup, simply copying it into the plugin is the extent of the setup for normal operation.  However, I ran into an issue with getting my transactions confirmed, because I believe it is blocking the callback IP from PayPal.

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An Honest Affiliate Espionage Review

This is a completely honest and straight forward review of the latest affiliate FireFox plugin, Affiliate Espionage.  This review will assume a few things about the reader,  so as not to wear down on the finer details of affiliate marketing.  First assumption is that you use FireFox and understand the plugin process.  Second, you are somewhat familiar with affiliate marketing and traffic generating methods. Lastly, you have a decent grasp on the workings of Adwords and are already familiar with the process of trial and error keywords to get the best ROI through your Adword campaigns.

My History Of Affiliate Tools

I’ve used my fair share of affiliate tools or plugins to help at least research and automate some of the research process.  Some of my favorite tools in the marketing process are SEO Quake, Rank Checker, and KeyWord Explorer.  This being said, I have never purchased a plugin or even purchased from a typical landing sales pitch page.  Yes, Affiliate Espionage is the first exception I’ve made to buying into the hype, no matter how well founded.

Experience With Adwords

At least one of my websites have had an active Adwords campaign going on at any given time for the past 2 years.  Generally I spend the majority of my time figuring out long tail keywords, low bid terms, or looking for new angles on creating a campaign.  It takes some time to build up enough research, not to mention money on wasted keyword campaigns.  This wasted time and money is what led me to search for an alternative, a way for me to gauge how well a keyword will convert, without me having to waste my own money on it.

This is not typical information you will find on webmaster forums, obviously the highest converting keywords are always kept a secret.  And in the past few months I’ve been trying to diversify my affiliate revenue portfolio, so testing has been the bulk of my time online.  Generally research starts with brainstorming, then to see what Google Keywords tool has to say, and finally throwing together a low budget campaign.  The problem is that these low budget campaigns can quickly add up over a few days and tweaking can take even longer to develop enough of a track record to know if it’s(Adwords Campaign) really working or a fluke.  Affiliate Espionage is a FireFox plugin to help solve these problems and help me focus on only keywords that are converting.

Buying Process

The Affiliate Espionage landing page is just like every other over hyped product on the market, it’s flashy and full of look how cool I am pictures.  Personally, those are enough to turn me off, but it’s function is what really brought me in, so I had to put blinders on to the marketing aspect of it.  As usual, the nuts and bolts of the sales process can be found at the bottom of an extremely too long page, Add to Cart for just $9.97.

Affiliate Espionage accepts PayPal and is a straight forward purchase, followed by the necessary ‘Limited Time Offer’ to upgrade to a keyword version of the plugin.  This upsell didn’t interest me in the slightest bit, especially since I came after this plugin KNOWING what I wanted.  After I clicked off ‘No Thanks’ it was straight to the startup page, where I setup my account information, downloaded the plugin, go the PDF Manual and had access to the how-to videos.

I’ve picked the manual appart and it’s very well put together and straightforward answering any and all immediate questions.  Also, the download is simple, only requiring an extration of a zip file and then typical FireFox plugin install.  Affiliate Espionage requires one verification process, which checks your license key and email.  No problems there and I have tested installing Affiliate Espionage on multiple computers, no issues there either.

Getting Started With Affiliate Espionage

My first reaction to using the Affiliate Espionage plugin was, ‘This was a dud.’  For some reason, in my head, I thought that an existing database of keyword history campaigns would come with the plugin. No, there is no Affiliate Espionage database to download, import, or steal from, you have to make your own from your own set of keywords.

This makes sense, now, that in no way would I want others to have my keywords.  Furthermore, it’s a discovery tool, a research aid to help me figure out what keywords I need to be competing with.  What good would the tool be if it gave everyone the same information.  Also, could you imagine how big that database of keywords and Adword campaign history it would be?  Too big.  My initial reaction was quickly alleviated once I realized that setting up my own automatic affiliate espionage campaign was simple.

The plugin works by utilizing individual keyword searches you make in Google, providing you with all the necessary stats that are presented on the Affiliate Espionage website.  However, to really get the most out of the plugin you need to do batch processing setup on a set schedule, that way you can really tell if a keyword is working for an affiliate.  Taking a snap shot of ad campaigns for just a few days is not enough,  this plugin needs weeks, a month, or more to get accurate data that you can start building affiliate sites and Adword campagins around.

Once these campaigns and automated keyword lists are setup, the rest is a breeze and the majority of the research is done for you.  It really is a wonderful tool, that keeps me from feeling guilty for not doing more manual research, and allows me to focus on more important different things.  Say for example, link building, writing bad ass plugin reviews, or just wasting my time on Reddit.

Ease of Use

Affiliate Espionage is really easy to use, once you get used to the acronyms used.  Basically after you performa  Google search you are presented with highlighted fields next to each individual ad.  Each highlighted area contains a plethora of information about the Ad campaign, such as length it’s been used, keywords used, landing page url, and even has the ability to find out which advertisers are using affiliate links on the landing page.

Setting up your keyword list to run weekly can be a little daunting at first, but really is simple after you do it just once.  Much like figuring out the acronyms, after you know what they mean, it’s a great tool to use at a glance.  No need for advanced usage here, what you see is what you get, it’s just a matter of how often you search for valuable keywords.

Support for Affiliate Espionage

So far I haven’t needed any support for the plugin, however it appears that they have an advanced ticket system if it’s needed.  Also, they provide plenty of helpful videos and a through FAQ page that covers any basic questions or problems you might have getting started.

In Conclusion

I would strongly recommend the purchase of Affiliate Espionage to any affiliate marketer, at any level.  Even if you’ve been doing online marketing for years, the automatic process of pulling Adword campaign information is well worth the measly $9.97 you will spend on this Fire Fox plugin.  And if you are new to online marketing and looking to get your feet wet with Adwords, this tool could save you countless dollars, wasted on finding the best converting keyword combination.

If you found my review useful, please use my affiliate link when purchasing Affiliate Espionage.


I don’t refer or affiliate any products on my blog that I don’t personally use.  Even then I’m hesitant to recommend products or tools because mileage may vary on any digital product.  When you see a recommendation here, it is unsolicited, and comes from my own experience.

Steal My RSS Feed

Where has RSS footer been all my life?

Two years ago I had a wildly successful video game system blog that generated great traffic, but most of my content was constantly getting stolen.  Black hat sites and the like would take my RSS feed and build thin affiliate sites out of them, with of course no link back to me.  Attempting to get my content removed was a waste of time.

Now I’ve been using RSS footer on some of my niche blogs and it works GREAT.  RSS Footer is a wordpress plugin that will automatically add a link to your site at the bottom of each post, with the option of adding a link back to the specific post, complete with anchor text.  The features are customizable and you can even add bits of html code, to be displayed in your RSS feed only.

No longer will I have to worry about people stealing my content via RSS, as a matter of fact I want people to use it.  Generating links has never been easier for my niche content blogs and I’m hoping to really start feeling the SEO love before too long.

phpBay Review

Let me start by giving a brief over view of the WordPress plugin phpBay. It’s a tool used to help integrate you’re eBay affiliate marketing with any WordPress powered blog. By entering a few variables and filters you can easily add a list of eBay items into your post with each link automatically containing your referral link. It’s not a free plugin and requires a one time fee for unlimited domains for $39.

Who could benefit from such a plugin?

Almost any blog could benefit from this plugin. Chances are even personal blogs go into details about certain products from time to time and this is just another tool in your shed of marketing. However, just because you could benefit from the plugin doesn’t mean it’s for everyone. eBay affiliate commissions can be minimal and require substantial traffic to convert to anything worth getting a check for.

Can it be used with other advertising programs?

Typically when people ask this they mean, ‘Can I use phpbay with Adsense and not get banned?’ Yes, you can use this side by side with Google Adsense, because it is not a form of contextual advertising.

List me the Pros of phpBay.

  • plain and simple installation, exactly like every other WP plugin.
  • decent selection of options to make sure you display the right eBay items.
  • fairly inexpensive for what you get.
  • good customer support.
  • does not require a mysql database, therefore ideal for light weight hosting.

List me the Cons.

  • only one instance of phpBay ads can be displayed at one time, therefore you must place phpBay ads after the <more function. (See below for more of my frustration in this.)
  • not enough options. Although decent I’d like to see the ability to integrate it into sidebars, not just in posts and better category selections.
  • costs money. Yes I did list that as a Pro, but as many free WP plugins that are available, this should be one too.


It was a decent purchase and defintely not a waste of money like so many other programs and scripts available out there. I would consider this plugin juvenile in it’s existence and would hope for some more development in the very near future. The inability to display more than one instance of itself on a page is very frustrating and should at least be remedied with a short cut fix.

Adsense Deluxe is a perfect example of a plugin that was designed to work with no more than X instances of itself on a page. This should be easily integrated into phpBay so that if it detects more than one instance of itself on a page it doesn’t load the others. As it stands now, it will screw up your RSS feed without placing the code after the <more tag.

Currently there is nothing else really to compare it to in the marketplace of WordPress plugins. However, when compared to other eBay affiliate tools like BuildANicheStore, it has a long way to go. Check back soon for my review on BANs.

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