Plenty of Stories....


Shoemoney called out the owner of PlentyOfFish, claiming he scraped content to build his dating site then used fake stories of wealth to attract blogger buzz to promote his site. Markus threatened to sue Shoemoney, so it could get ugly.

From Shoemoney's post:

I remember when this guy was posting he was making 30$ a day from AdSense on webmasterworld. Then he solicited some people to scrape dating profiles of females from random sites so he could fill his dating website with female profiles.

Then he puts out some fake press releases with bullsh*t statistics like 5th largest dating site.

Now he makes up some crap that he is making 10k/day from AdSense

He hires people to blog about his bull crap and sends email to every blogger (including me) offering a “exclusive interview”. I called him out when he emailed me and told him I was not buying into his bullocks.

Can you make 10K a day from AdSense off a PageRank 5 dating site? If you were doing that well would you go off and tell everyone about it? We will see if Markus actually follows through on his lawsuit or if this is more of his alleged BS.


Yes you can ...

... if it gets enough traffic.

It's traffic that counts, not PageRank.

My PageRank comment was more

My PageRank comment was more about how deep engines will crawl it and how much natural citation / newsworthiness surrounds the site...not that I think PageRank is the end all be all.

I have some horrificly bad sites that are PR5. In verticals as competitive as dating I also would think that the top sites would have more link authority, IMHO.

I don't know if Markus is bs on the earnings or not. .

but he's definitely in the game. On WMW (via PM) he gave me a simple elegant solution for detecting con artist and scammers that my company has ripped through a lot of money and time trying solve. The only way he could understand the problem was to be in the firefight.

I vote that Markus is ligitimate.

His marketing tactics are gorilla but they work. Not sure about the PR issues but comscore is hard to rig. It's about the only thing we have to guage high traffic sites.

Shoe stepped in it

Bet you didn't notice plentyoffish has an Alexa rank of 837, which is kind of hard to fake, unless you try REAL HARD and bribe people to run the toolbar best I can tell.

Where Shoe stepped over the line was calling it a scam with "this whole plentyoffish scam", that's not an opinion, that's libel. Saying "it smells fishy" is an opinion, claiming it's a "scam" is not an opinion, that's calling it a scam.

Worst case, if Markus REALLY makes the amount of money he claims he can just bury Shoe in legal fees defending his stupid comments.

Shoe better get some clean underwear handy because Markus is gonna smack the crap outta him and THEN smack him for crapping, THEN bring in the legal team and put the hurt on his ass.

It would be difficult for. .

It would be hard for a two person company to pursue and fight a complicated legal battle. I've been there and no work get's done while the lawyers are tying you up and sucking your blood dry.

Bottom line it's bad business unless your life, family or livelyhood is on the line.


Pulling my seat closer. Breaking out the popcorn. :)

Plentyoffish is the fifth largest dating site

according to hitwise and Aaron you really think it cannot even make 10k a day?...I dont know why Shoe posted that but i can vouch for markus

"His marketing tactics are gorilla but they work"

Its *guerilla*, Classifieds!
(Maybe its the day I am having.... ;))

"Its *guerilla*, Classifieds!"

No it's GORILLA as in "Ugly but Strong" :)


ok, that works
(but I'm laughing anyway ;))


I find the funniest part is shoe is now doing PR for markus, total classic. Life must suck if you have nothing better to do than bag others, especially from the same industry. What goes around come around. Best of luck.

And here goes the up until

And here goes the up until now TW pro-Shoe, anti-Shoe campaign.

But the people here have some sense.

Who is Shoemoney anyway?

One day there is a post about his wonderful blog on Threadwatch. Next day he's a moderator here. That smells "fishy" to me :-)

I don't know Shoemoney. He

I don't know Shoemoney. He is one of DaveN's friends.

I was just kidding. We have

I was just kidding.

We have chatted on the phone and at WMW Pubcon Boston. He has always been a class act and uber kind to me.

All your primes are belong to us

People who do stuff like and can pull guerrilla marketing like he's done certainly should be capable of pulling 10k/day.

Far as I can tell on just "online dating" alone the whole fiasco bumped POF up from a longstanding #5 to #2. That's an f'ing huge term. One major player in the online dating arena was willing to spend $1M USD on link development to try to get there...

Either way, hope this doesn't come to a lawsuit. Shoe posts some great stuff and ?has a new show coming up on WMR? that I don't wanna see derailed!

With Shoe

I've got to put my trust in Shoemoney here. If he calls BS, I'm siding with him - he's earned my trust and I've no reason to disbelieve him. I also think there's a new rule pushing it's way into the blogosphere - he who is first to sue must be guilty.

It's like the Hitler rule in the forums...


Personally, not knowing either of the guys, I like the conspiracy theory aspect - its a put up job to generate publicity and backlinks.
Any takers?

Who is Shoemoney

Who is Shoemoney anyway?

I think he's the guy in charge of affiliate recruitment at Azoogle.


You need to seed any site that relies on user generated content. For the succesful sites seeding will stop as it becomes unnecessary.

Apart from this I refuse to voice an opinion on either party in this debate.

I'm an independent lawyer....

Can I act for both of them?

That way you are surely a

That way you are surely a winner.

AFAIK, things are getting out of hand...

I don't know either of the two players involved, but AFAIK, ThomasB sums it up eloquently, on Shoemoney's blog:

Is there really any need to behave like kids and fight over stuff another person has or has not achieved. If he makes 10k/day he well deserves it, if he doesn’t he’s a marketing genius and well deserves the press.

I kinda feel lost in this industry lately. Outing SPAM was a no-go about a year ago, though some people did via email, now they even blog it and only for the link love. Now we go even further and say that people from our industry lie and are full of sh*t. Back in the days we all were friendly to each other and enjoyed learning from each others ideas and approaches. Now everybody gets jealous. Sad world. :(

If attacking or outing people, for whatever reason, becomes common ... then this business will have taken a seriously nasty turn for the worse.

Mother's Day is coming up, and this all brings to mind the universal admonition from mothers everywhere: If you can't say something nice about someone...


P.S. Exception to the 'say something nice rule': Aaron does an unbelievably good job of calling out the sleazy behaviour of companies out to scam their clients and partners. Nothing nice to be said about those types. Keep up the good work Aaron!

If attacking or outing people, for whatever reason, becomes common ... then this business will have taken a seriously nasty turn for the worse.

If I can ever get around to writing some content, should cover this niche quite nicely.

I was just about to make a

I was just about to make a post on what I thought of Caveman.

I retracted it once I saw the PS bit. ;)

Hey Aaron

>> I retracted it once I saw the PS bit. ;)

... was that the PS bit or the BS bit? :P

I believe him

I believe him simply because I think it would be next to impossible not to make a crapload of money on a dating site with that much traffic. As someone mentioned, top 1000 in Alexa is nothing to squawk at. I haven't looked too deep into what he uses for advertising, but Adult Friend Finder can bring in huge money if used right and Adsense on a dating site (which probably gets a fairly high quality score) can garner 2-3 dollar adsense clicks.


If you can't say something nice about someone...

If you have something to say that is Not Nice, it's vital for both legal reasons and karma reasons to make very, very sure it's accurate.

Slamming someone when you haven't got your facts straight is one of the worst things you can do for your own credibility.

It isnt about nice...

its about legal. Why is it that people feel that since they have a keyboard and a blog that they can write whatever they want without consequences?

Not nice

Personally, I'll never run a business thinking that it should be just about legal. So sue me. :P

Running a business (and a career ) is about a lot of things, including how people treat each other. I'm sure I've seen more careers and businesses falter as a result of bad behavior, than as a result of bad operational or legal decisions.

As buckworks alludes - and stuntdubl is fond is noting - karma is a powerful thing.

Paris Hilton has lots of Shoe Money

Paris Hilton is a media whore. Think about that for a second. Funny how language works, isn't it? Also, which came first? Anyway...

Shoemoney has been flashing the bling-bling and talking the talk and making a celeb of himself of late. What's the mystery here? Remember, everything is negotiable, right? In the end isn't this just a mutually beneficial publicity stunt, even if it started out as a one-sided slam from TheShoe?

Don't hate the players...

Mutually beneficial publicity stunt?

Reminds me of the very recent hoohaa about the Da Vinci Code copyright litigation in the UK. Both the first book and second book sold a ton more copies and there was a lot of speculation in the media that it was a cooked up job, with the litigation ending just before release of the film. This little matter is a rare win-win situation even for the loser whoever that might be with both of them laughing all the way to the bank. Anyway lads who cares...its not exactly life or death.

I was under the impression

I was under the impression he spends a lot on TV and Radio advertising as well as PPC so why would page rank be detrimental to earning 10k a day ?


You are one of the worst offenders of the bunch.


That might be libelous.

Seriously tho

I use a lot of expletives and pejoratives, but you have to know when not to cross that fine line.


I believe you have to also show damages for the libelous claim. To be honest, getting a crapload of links and publicity from being called a scam doesn't seem to do too much damage. Is he going to say that he lost traffic because of this? Or that people didn't click on ads anymore?

Shoe can talk crap about a few sites I have if he likes. :-)

If attacking or outing

If attacking or outing people, for whatever reason, becomes common ... then this business will have taken a seriously nasty turn for the worse.

Becomes common? Where you been? In a cave? ;-)

Outing has been all the rage for the last few years. From the wanker newbie affiliate boards to the "rockstars" of today, it's all about the outing.

I liked it better when there were no "rockstars" and everyone kept their mouths shut. If you saw someone spamming or scamming, you picked up a new trick or two. You didn't rat them out or slam them.

There used to be honor amongst this industry. Not any more. It's really a fucking shame.

There used to be honor amongst this industry


well fuck me side ways, when I got 302ed to fuck 4 years ago I didn't think that was honor and when I found his network of sites I showed no Honor only RAGE ! .. , When a mutli-billion dollar company asked me to take out a competitor I didn't think that was right.. but i told then what they had to do

Personally I don't think there has ever been honor in this industry, I'm here for the friends and the Money..

When changed the ads to blend like natural serps that was bad in fact it's very close to breaking google tos is that an outing or just news

engadget selling text links on his sites to scaper sites is that outing or news

BMW spamming outing or news

or that expedia, lastminute and are all spamming at the moment NEWS or OUTING .. hmmm

MY point of view if it's pure blackhatsite then i'm down with that I will let Dougie carry that banner..

but when you have all the power in the serps like BMW, Expedia, Lastminute, EasyJet, and about 20 others !! then thats just plain bad for the industry.. blackhat or whitehat


hear hear

but when you have all the power in the serps.. [and you spam]..then thats just plain bad for the industry

hear hear!

Its fair game

Dave, its news, and it isnt libel.

Gotta say Dave

Agree with all of your points as they relate to the comment about 'honor', hehe.

But, at least IMHO, there is a big difference between reporting on what BMW was up to, and the case we're talking about here.

There was a lot of behind the scenes buzz going on about Markus' claims, but whether one buys them or not, discussing it behind the scenes and going after Markus publically are two different things. What was the point of it? Should we all start going after people in our blogs just because they make big claims, or we don't like their tactics. I hope not, who has time? Plus, come to think of it, I don't even have a blog. :P

Granted, Markus put himself in a position to invite scrutiny. But in a way, that is what makes this one worth talking about. Scrutiny is one thing. But the comments made in this case were unnecessary, eh?

ThomasB's comments still hold for me...this stuff is just getting way out of hand. FFS, it's like the whole world has become part of the Fox Network.

What I hope is that both parties involved in this little spat are taking a breath just about now. That would be a good thing. It appears - just from the level and quality of support each has - that both must have lots of talent, and lots to offer. How can this be anything but a diversion of their valuable time?

So how about we all get back to looking after our friends, and making money? ;-)

ShoeMoney. Markus. If I ever end up at the bar with either or both of you, beers on me, as long as we're both standing.

The "honor" thing was more

The "honor" thing was more about ThomasB's comments than Shoemoney vs. Markus or BMW & Expedia.

If you are getting 302'd or someone is directly fucking with you that's another story. The BMW, Expedia, etc... stuff-- that is news.

I was talking more about outing SPAM as ThomasB said:

...I kinda feel lost in this industry lately. Outing SPAM was a no-go about a year ago, though some people did via email, now they even blog it and only for the link love. Now we go even further and say that people from our industry lie and are full of sh*t. Back in the days we all were friendly to each other and enjoyed learning from each others ideas and approaches. Now everybody gets jealous.

Difference between BMW and

What's the difference really? I mean both sites were "optimized" by a SEO most probably. If Google/Y!/MSN is not able to catch either site, why should we help them? In the end of the day, as soon as we make any site disappear because of any sort of SPAM reports you hurt somebody who put effort in it.

Search Comparison

Search Comparison for ( in blue ) ( Orange ) ( Red )

Looking like that sites gotten lots of traffic for sometime now.

well fuck me side ways, when

well fuck me side ways, when I got 302ed to fuck 4 years ago I didn't think that was honor and when I found his network of sites I showed no Honor only RAGE !

I wish sometimes there were sound bytes attached to posts. That one would be choice.

Alexa confirms it

Did you see they had a very similar chart?

The only thing I find amusing is that INDIA is ahead of the US in traffic to the site, which is where a lot of 'click farms' work, or is that where the mods are from, or both?

Very hard to believe Markus can fake trends on both Google AND Alexa.

Where has Shoe gone when the facts are indisputable?

Must be busy trying to extricate his foot from his mouth...

as incrediBill calls him "shoe"

as incrediBill calls him "Shoe", he's laughing at the success of his PR campaign. When will he post the "sincere" and "endearing" self-effacing apology to his blog? Or are we almost ready for RoundTwo..dingdingding.

Laugh Clown Laugh

If Markus is making the kind of money he claims, which the trends more or less confirm is possible, it will be Markus laughing at HIS success all the way to the bank.

The PR campaign negativity you think is such as success has soured many people's opinion, I have been told as much by several people, and we all know that all PR is not good PR. Could be some serious damage control required and competitors will be tempted to easily point to this noise when going head to head with a client.

Not a place I'd want to be.

Logical oops

we all know that all PR is not good PR

No, we don't know that.

I'd be more likely to agree if you had said "we all know that not all PR is good PR".

Sorry to nitpick, but the meanings are substantively different.

funny, that

funny... incrediBill suggesting that one be careful because negative PR might be harmful. This from the guy who's top snippet when googled starts with COME AND FUCKING GET

The difference

I think you missed the point that I don't have clients, don't want clients, it's called being semi-retired as I only work on my stuff now, not client stuff.

I think Markus is a great marketing brain.

I never read the post on Shoemoney until now. It's really not that cool to whine about whether plentyoffish makes that kind of money or not. Unless they've a feud of some kind we don't know about. I also run a free dating site speedateauction dot com and with only just over 25,000 impressions per day i'm making around $375 per day from Adsense.

So i think it's attainable.


I have been laughing ever since I read that comment about "Honor" and SEOs... It was sarcastic... right?

Honor among SEOs what a novel concept. ROTFLMAO

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.