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Creative tracking

Note that this script can work for documents on your web page and elsewhere on the net. You can post an image to USENET as:

<img src="http://xav.com/ax.pl?http://xav.com/pict.gif">

and then view the statistics on people who view the picture from their browser-based newsreaders. The people being logged will never see your site, they may never know what happened, but you'll have their access stats.

This script could also be set up on a CGI-enhanced provider and used to log accesses on a different, non-CGI-enhanced web page (though only the redirect method will work in these offsite cases, and the full URL to the redirect script will have to be written out as in the above example).

If you go to a guestbook on your friend's page and enter your URL as:


you will be able to log each time that link is followed.

The same works for mailto links:


and just about any other URL-based expression. Note that for mailto, telnet, and other non-HTTP links, the browser may leave a blank page behind when the user clicks the link. This can be somewhat mitigated by opening the link in a new window, like:


You can always add a redirect to a URL, and you can chain your redirects as many times as you'd like (though, again, this may cause data corruption if you set up your redirect calls back-to-back).

    "Creative tracking"