On many sites, the users do not know how many hits equals 1c. In some cases this is hidden behind babble or some imaginary ‘score’, i.e.virils. This, of course, allows the Owners to play with the earnings.
At first, a user, especially a new user, will not grasp the significance of this ruse. They will publish and comment, and look at their earnings, and try to figure out how the numbers are tallied.
When it doesn’t make sense, the users become somewhat suspicious and begin to pause their contribution, begin to double check their so called earnings, and were this ten years ago, the site would sink without bubbles.
However, today, there are very few legitimate sites. Very few which actually pay or treat their users with respect. If there were a few honest ones then these trick sites would never gain a user, and if doing so, would quickly collapse.
Unfortunately, as most sites are dishonest, they survive until enough complaints are published or the Owners have made enough money, and split before their names are tarnished.