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My first suspicion was that this might be click fraud, as the IP addresses are different to other Slurp IPs that we saw crawling at the same time (with usual behaviour). The new IPs were:
These all check out as Inktomi.
This was actually mentioned a while ago (http://www.webmasterworld.com/forum35/3294.htm) but no one replied to the post. I was hoping that maybe someone has seen a similar thing or can shed some light on this?
It would also be nice if someone could confirm whether or not these referals should be costing us as click?
The only place I can work out where the entrance page URLs (with our PPC tracking codes) are being found is by following the 302s from our paid links through Overture. I'm not sure how Overture works but wouldn't this be tracked as a click?
Every time Slurp arrives at our site, it uses a different Overture keyword (like emomilk we used our PPC tracking in the URLs to identify this). Looking at our Overture stats for the days this happened shows no extra clicks. Some of the keywords used by Slurp to get to our site have never been clicked according to Overture's stats, so we're pretty sure this activity isn't being charged for.
I mentioned this to our Overture account manager last week and we're still waiting for the official line on what's going on.