Amazon Affiliate url? September 1, 2008 5:39 PM   Subscribe

Metafilter's Amazon.com Affiliate code url...

I noticed Metafilter is using http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/XXXXXXXXXX/metafilter-20/ref=nosim/ url for it's Amazon.com Affiliate links. I assume MeFi is automagically rewriting the Amazon urls?

I believe the preferred method of tagging Amazon.com product urls is: http://www.amazon.com/dp/XXXXXXXXXX/?tag=metafilter-20

Can anyone confirm this linking method?

I'm sure the old-style ref=nosim code will continue to work (the ref=nosim variable was discontinued), but someone may want to update the rewrite script in case Amazon decides to break the old style of url for affiliate tracking. (They did retire the AWS 3.0 version of their affiliate system, breaking all those old scripts, so it's not out of the question.)
posted by jca to Feature Requests at 5:39 PM (46 comments total)



Amazon keeps changing their URLs, but the rewrite still works just fine. If it ever does break, we can rewrite it, but it seems to work fine for now.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 6:18 PM on September 1, 2008


I found it kind of obnoxious to attach the "metafilter-20" ad code to the end of any amazon URL that shows up here

Yeah, I said that for about six years when people kept asking me to add the feature, but once the servers cost several thousand a month to run, I decided to go ahead and try it out. There's a metatalk thread where I announced it and said why I changed my mind about it.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 6:19 PM on September 1, 2008




Yup, looks like it only does it when the submitted URL already has an affiliate link attached to it.

Not that I have any say in it, but I think this is a fair source of revenue for metafilter, since it would otherwise be someone else using metafilters posts and comments to generate revenue for themselves (and in some ways would be a mutant form of self linking).
posted by mrzarquon at 6:53 PM on September 1, 2008


I would love to code up 4-5 killer pro features and let folks pay 3-4 bucks a month extra to get those features...

I bet we can think some stuff up.
posted by popechunk at 7:01 PM on September 1, 2008


mrzarquon, we don't do it in metatalk since it doesn't come up very often here, we only rewrite URLs in www and ask.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 7:20 PM on September 1, 2008


oh, i had thought it was still specifically for the links with the affiliates already included (I think that was mentioned a while back?).

eitherway, makes sense to me.
posted by mrzarquon at 7:23 PM on September 1, 2008


mrz, as far as I know that's correct too—we only replace affiliates, don't add affiliate codes to unaffiliated links—but it doesn't apply to Metatalk in either case, essentially.

Though I could have that wrong, too. It's kind of a minor issue.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:46 PM on September 1, 2008


We add them to any amazon link, but only in MeFi and Ask MeFi.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 8:54 PM on September 1, 2008


Learning!
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:05 PM on September 1, 2008 [2 favorites]


This thread has worked out really well for everybody involved. Two thumbs up!
posted by turgid dahlia at 10:02 PM on September 1, 2008


What is the simplest/easiest way for me to use the metafilter affiliate link for every amazon purchase I make whether it is linked off of mefi or not?
posted by BrotherCaine at 1:12 AM on September 2, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yeah, I wouldn't mind paying a few bucks a month for some sort of MeFi Pro. Not that I have any specific pony requests right now, I just wouldn't mind supporting my favorite site on the entire internet. I know there's probably some sort of donate feature somewhere but you know...
posted by sveskemus at 2:41 AM on September 2, 2008


The rewriting of links that already HAVE an affiliate link is fine with me (and indeed, very clever), as long as you don't start adding the affiliate link for plain, naked Amazon links to glue on revenue.
posted by rokusan at 4:17 AM on September 2, 2008


as long as you don't start adding the affiliate link for plain, naked Amazon links to glue on revenue.

Why not?
posted by BrotherCaine at 4:21 AM on September 2, 2008


Yeah, I wouldn't mind paying a few bucks a month for some sort of MeFi Pro.

Ooh ooh ooh! I want this! I'd pay $5 a month for a MeFi Pro account! I don't even know what would be on it but I can think of several features I'd like to see.
posted by DarlingBri at 6:27 AM on September 2, 2008


as long as you don't start adding the affiliate link for plain, naked Amazon links to glue on revenue.

That's how it has worked since January, 2006.
posted by Partial Law at 6:34 AM on September 2, 2008


Look, it's a free site, an awesome site, with massive traffic and a whole bunch of expensive servers. This place doesn't run itself, it's supporting Matt and two awesome mods.

And yes, the affiliate link gets added to every link, cuz it gets added to my links and I've never been an affiliate.

That being said, I have never really understood how people get their undies in such a frikken bunch when anybody makes the slightest maneuvers that they might somehow be financially benefited at the same time that they are offering advice (I'm thinking of the magic wand thread).
posted by Deathalicious at 6:45 AM on September 2, 2008


What is the simplest/easiest way for me to use the metafilter affiliate link for every amazon purchase I make whether it is linked off of mefi or not?

In the general case, I've seen a couple of WP plugins that do this sort of auto-rewrite on stuff; I'd be surprised if there wasn't some greasemonkey out there that you could do the same with.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:47 AM on September 2, 2008


Wait just one second here, so every time someone asks for info on something, and I include an amazon.com link in my response, the link gets updated to include something which helps generate more revenue for Metafilter.com?? Totally rockin'.
posted by Grither at 6:59 AM on September 2, 2008


"We add them to any amazon link, but only in MeFi and Ask MeFi."

I can finally start making money off my MeTa!
posted by klangklangston at 7:08 AM on September 2, 2008


While we're here Re: MeFi Pro. I don't know if it was part of the plan for MeFi Pro and I'm not sure that I would have paid for it but thanks anyway, can I mention that when adding a contact the form says 'A variety of tools will soon be available to show you all posts, comments, questions, and answers from your contacts.' Isn't that sort of redundant now that you've given it to us (for free)?
posted by tellurian at 7:13 AM on September 2, 2008


rokusan: as long as you don't start adding the affiliate link for plain, naked Amazon links to glue on revenue.

Who cares? It costs you nothing. MeFi's not getting any kind of data out of it.
posted by mkultra at 7:21 AM on September 2, 2008


I know there's probably some sort of donate feature somewhere but you know...

Donate to MetaFilter
or
Give the gift of MetaFilter
posted by carsonb at 7:27 AM on September 2, 2008


Matt: Does this work for amazon.co.uk as well? If it does not, as I suspect; could you not get a similar referral; MetaFilter not being totally N.American.
posted by adamvasco at 7:48 AM on September 2, 2008


There is also an affiliate program for amazon.ca (although amazon.ca is so incredibly limited in scope I am not sure that would be worth pursuing).
posted by kate blank at 8:40 AM on September 2, 2008


powells.com too? They give 7.5% too. (says the man who uses Amazon as a gigantic ISBN lookup db and goes down a real bookshop).
posted by tallus at 9:11 AM on September 2, 2008


What is the simplest/easiest way for me to use the metafilter affiliate link for every amazon purchase I make whether it is linked off of mefi or not?
posted by BrotherCaine at 1:12 AM on September 2 [1 favorite +] [!]


I'd like to do this as well. Is there any reason that's not cool to do/there's no practical way to do it?
posted by KAS at 9:35 AM on September 2, 2008 [1 favorite]


It is technically possible to just make a homepage amazon.com affiliate link, I guess the only question would be where to put it for easy access (if it is indeed something Matt & Co want to pursue).
posted by kate blank at 9:56 AM on September 2, 2008


In the past, I've made a link to the amazon home page with my associate link, periodically posted it in a message thread, and the people who are inclined can pull the link into their bookmarks folder.
posted by Dave Faris at 10:02 AM on September 2, 2008


> I would love to code up 4-5 killer pro features and let folks pay 3-4 bucks a month extra to get those features

I would pay $5 a month for the img tag.

Or a little star next to my name.
posted by churl at 10:06 AM on September 2, 2008 [2 favorites]


churl
posted by Wolfdog at 10:10 AM on September 2, 2008


Contact me for payment info.
posted by Wolfdog at 10:10 AM on September 2, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yeah. Hook this up to Powell's. I don't really do Amazon except under dire circumstances -- the chances that any given Amazon purchase will actually be from their third party vendors is just too high for me to deal with them any more. (Yes, I'm aware it's possible to weed that junk out, but it's effort I don't have to deal with when I buy from Powell's)
posted by majick at 12:35 PM on September 2, 2008


I'd pay for a little star by my name! I'm just dorky like that. And given the amount of time I spend here vs. on, say, Flickr (where I have a pro account), much more worth it to me.
posted by bitter-girl.com at 1:03 PM on September 2, 2008


I think we all know the best way to donate to MetaFilter is by creating new $5 sockpuppets with really funny names. MetaFilter gets $5, you get an awesome new user name for making ironic comments, and the rest of us get to bask in all of that glorious irony.

I got dibs on Rupert Murdoch.
posted by clearly at 1:33 PM on September 2, 2008 [1 favorite]


[ï(5] Wolfdog
posted by churl at 5:05 PM on September 2, 2008


So... what characters can be in usernames? I vaguely remember the ASCII-NAZIS took away most of the Unicode chars.
posted by ryanrs at 8:26 PM on September 2, 2008


That could be a good pro feature, you can have a unicode username if you pay enough extra to make it worth the mod's time to double check the name for mischief. I can just see it now, the digital divide between the haves and have-nots. "Your username has no special characters? You probably dont even have a summer home in real life, loser!"
posted by BrotherCaine at 8:48 PM on September 2, 2008


"as long as you don't start adding the affiliate link for plain, naked Amazon links to glue on revenue."

Why not? If I incidentally provide some small remuneration to Mefi in a way doesn't affect the content of what I posted, why should I care? On the contrary, I'd be downright pleased about it.

Ahem.

I hereby explicitly grant matt permission to add revenue-producing referral tags to any commercial URL I ever place in a comment or thread, or modify such URL in any way necessary to produce the same result, including removing any referral tag I might have deliberately or inadvertently included, providing only that it doesn't change the actual target of the URL in such a way as to make me look like a prat.
posted by George_Spiggott at 9:07 PM on September 2, 2008


as long as you don't start adding the affiliate link

Yeah, I'm with George_Spiggott on this one. I don't see why you wouldn't add the mefi affiliate link.
posted by pompomtom at 11:53 PM on September 2, 2008


"Or a little star next to my name." --churl

"I'd pay for a little star by my name! I'm just dorky like that." --bitter-girl.com


Those who do not read Dr. Seuss are forever doomed to repeat the mistakes of the Sneetches.
posted by stavrogin at 1:42 AM on September 3, 2008 [3 favorites]


"Your username has no special characters? You probably dont even have a summer home in real life, loser!"

I've been working all summer double-shift, just to be able to afford an asterisk next to my username. Don't rub it in, please.
posted by ersatz at 8:11 AM on September 3, 2008 [2 favorites]


Would it be possible to preserve the title in the amazon link? Normally, when you go to Amazon, the link has the title in it, like:
http://www.amazon.com/Veganomicon-Ultimate-Isa-Chandra-Moskowitz/dp/156924264X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1220692167&sr=1-1 so when you mouse over the link, you see the title. Most of the time someone links a book, they don't mention the title, they just say something like: See this book.
posted by davar at 2:15 AM on September 6, 2008


as long as you don't start adding the affiliate link for plain, naked Amazon links to glue on revenue.

That's how it has worked since January, 2006.

Oh. Okay. Well, whatever. Seems kinda tacky, but doesn't upset me.
posted by rokusan at 3:46 AM on September 9, 2008


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