A while ago I decided it would be a good idea to let Google sell ads on my website. Actually, it originally started as an experiment – I just wanted to see how it worked.
I don’t get a fortune from these ads. It pays for my web hosting – not much more. We’re not taking any vacations on this money… even a vacation to Cheshire.
Here’s the funny part – I don’t see the ads!
There are two reasons I don’t see them. First, I use Firefox (instead of Internet Explorer), with an ad blocking extension. It’s sort of scary. I see very few ads on any site… even the most populated.
The second reason is more important. I don’t want my page views to count. On this little website, if I correct an entry or move something around, my ‘hits’ become a substantial fraction of the total traffic.
Saturday, while looking at Helaine’s computer, I caught an ad that upset me. I sent the following to Google.
There was an ad listed on my site for xxxxxxxxx.org. Their ad’s bold type offers advice on how to cheat at hold’em poker. There might be controversy about online poker in general, but I don’t think anyone condones organized cheating. I certainly don’t and find it morally and legally wrong.
I will block this advertiser, but I think you should consider whether this text, or their product, is appropriate for AdSense.
A quick clarification. Though I don’t choose the ads that appear, I can remove or block advertisers I feel aren’t appropriate. I block my TV station’s competitors. I block some national weather providers. I now block this poker site.
Here’s Google’s response.
Thank you for your email regarding a Google AdWords ad.
I’ve forwarded this information to our AdWords team, who will remove the ad in question if it is in violation of any AdWords policies. We appreciate you taking the time to let us know about your concerns.
For additional questions, we suggest you visit our AdSense Support site at https://www.google.com/support/adsense . If you’re unable to find an answer to your question on our site, please feel free to reply to this email.
The Google AdSense Team
They probably won’t tell me how this is resolved, though I’m hoping this kind of ad is now out.
2 thoughts on “The Company I Keep”
I’ve wondered how those ads are selected–by keywords or does someone actually read what you’ve posted? Usually there’s an obvious connection to the topic you’ve written about but not always. There was one for a nude beach after your CA vacation posts that had me wondering. I had to click on it, not to look at it, just to get you your 11 cents. 😉
And that poker one has appeared before.
As I understand it, Google’s spiders crawl the site picking up words – but not their meanings. So, when I wrote about the NYC subway, AdSense put ads on for a company brokering Subway franchises.