The Comcast advertising campaign came to Ars’ attention after Ryan Singel, the co-founder of startup Contextly, was reading Mediagazer at a café in the North Beach neighborhood of San Francisco on Labor Day.
A small red advertisement saying “XFINITY WiFi Peppy” scooted across the bottom of the Mediagazer page and disappeared into the ether. It happened a few times, he said. Singel took screen shots of the advertisement loading and as it appeared on his screen. He captured some code, too.
A Comcast served house ad.
Singel’s suspicions were correct that Mediagazer didn’t place the ad there, and Mediagazer is none too happy about it. “Indeed, they were not ours,” Gabe Rivera, who runs Mediagazer and Techmeme, said in an e-mail. In another e-mail, he said, “someone else is inserting them in a sneaky way.”