Running a good hoax was just plain fun in the age of the no frills website. But it's no joking matter in the era of the weblogs, Alek Komarnitsky found out.
The computer specialist from Denver claimed to allow internet visitors to control the lights in his Christmas tree. In reality, he just used different photos that were supposed to pass for webcam pictures.
You have to give the guy kudos for the extent to which he took his little scam. The Associated Press wrote: "To make it seem even more real, he would sometimes add an image of a person or a car driving by in the Web cam "shot" looking at the lights. He would even add computer-generated low-flying planes because an airport was near his home."
Komarnitsky finally decided to come clean, telling the Wall Street Journal that it had gotten "a little out of hand."
But in the age of Google ads, it turns out that Komarnitsky is in more trouble than he counted on. He ran Google ads on his webpage, and neither Google nor the advertisers are amused. "Finding out he's making a buck off of something that costs us a buck, it's not very cool," Paul McLellan, general manager of Minneapolis-based ServiceLighting.com told AP.
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