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Basic Instinct

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Your online ads aren't working? Try adding the occasional reference to on-camera sex.

X10.com wasn't shy about doing so, and traffic to its site has apparently grown by leaps and bounds lately. The naughty reference appeared in a "pop-under" Internet ad for X10's wire less video cameras. Featuring a picture of an attractive blonde, the ad suggested places to use the easy-to-hide camera: in the nursery, front porch, backyard, pool, garage and, yes, in the bedroom.

Lest you think it's just a tip on how to keep track of your socks, the company's Web site assures visitors that the XCam2 can "bring a little spice into your romance... (need we say more?)."

Whether or not Web surfers were heeding that particular call, X10.com has registered a huge jump in traffic of late—by one measure becoming the fifth most-visited site on the Internet in May, behind America Online, Lycos, several Microsoft sites and Yahoo!, according to a report from ABC News.

Predictably, though, some were not amused by the Seattle company's antics. After receiving a number of complaints, Latimes.com (the Web site of the Los Angeles Times) asked X10 to delete the bedroom reference, a request the company honored.

"We strive for ads that are tasteful," says Donna Stokely, a spokeswoman for Latimes.com. X10 didn't return calls.