Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Framed and booted!

What the...?

Yesterday, out of the blue, I got this message in my mailbox:

"It has come to our attention that invalid clicks have been generated on the ads on your web pages. We have therefore disabled your Google AdSense account. Please understand that this step was taken in an effort to protect the interest of the AdWords advertisers.

A publisher's site may not have invalid clicks on any ad(s), including but not limited to clicks generated by a publisher on his own web pages, clicks generated through the use of robots, automated clicking tools, or any other deceptive software.


Publishers disabled for invalid click activity are not allowed further participation in AdSense and do not receive any further payment. The earnings on your account will be properly returned to the affected advertisers.


The Google AdSense Team

What in the name of Bob Marley's ghost???

I've never received a penny from the Google ads and frankly, had given up hope of ever seeing one. However, what on earth triggered this accusation, I haven't the foggiest. I have a handful of times clicked myself on one of the ads; they're mostly for hearing assistive devices, and since I registered my own computer to be excluded when I joined AdSense, I just assumed those clicks would be ignored. And I can't even remember doing that in months.

So, feeling wrongly branded a liar and a cheat, I emailed them asking them to outline exactly what had triggered this trial by instantaneous booting. (The only, completely wild theory I can come up with is that someone, in a misguided attempt to "help" me, set up some kind of bot or program to click on the links. Whoever you are, thanks a lot - now I'm not only broke, I'm branded a cheat, as well.) Well, this was their response:

Thank you for your email regarding the action taken on your account.

We understand that you wish to receive specific information regarding the invalid clicks we observed on your account. However, due to the proprietary nature of our algorithm, we cannot disclose any details about how our monitoring technology works or what specifics we found on your account.

As you know, Google treats instances of invalid click activity very seriously. By disabling your account according to our policy on this matter, we feel that we have taken the necessary measures to protect our advertisers and to ensure that invalid clicks will not continue to occur on your site.

Publishers disabled for invalid click activity are not allowed further participation in Google AdSense. We appreciate your understanding.


The Google AdSense Team

Except they don't have my understanding. I'm blacklisted, can't be told why, and won't be reinstated. It's obviously much easier to assume every publisher with an abberation guilty than to work with a client to find out where an error might have occurred.

Considering, as I said, I've never gotten a red cent from participating in the program, I'm looking at it this way: I've stopped giving them and their advertisers promotion for free.

So long, Google, you miserable pricks, and thanks for all the fish.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I heard something very similar to this on the news a few days ago. Apparently, Google has decided it simply can't "afford" to pay anyone anymore, and so they're "booting" people who haven't actually recieved any pay from them, because in some vague manner it can't be traced. Don't ask me for specifics, I'm computer dumb. I'm just passing along what I heard. I know you can't actually challenge them in any sense, but it seems unreal that they claim they cannot tell you WHY they've decided to kick you, but yeah. If they're going to be like that about it, forget it. This is 2005, not 1984, and Big Brother is a pain, not a threat.

11:56 a.m.  
Blogger Brent McKee said...

Oh dear Ronnie. I have to admit that I have been in the habit of clicking on your Google Adsense ads every day. I can't help wondering if this might have contributed to your banning because I might be mistaken for a Bot.

There are, or soon will be, other click through advertising programs including ones from Yahoo! and MSN although the MSN program at least is still in the testing stages in France.

1:45 p.m.  
Blogger ronnie said...

Not to worry, Brent - there should be no reason why a third party clicking on the ads once a day would result in my account being disabled. I am doing some research and it seems that a lot of people are having the same experience. It may or may not be related to a lawsuit that has been brought against Google by some advertisers who have been the victim of bot-clicking. Knee-jerk reaction, as it were.

Not to worry. In spite of your kind efforts, I never broke the monthly $5 base limit or whatever it was in order to get paid. I'll just use that real-estate for another program. Google will be sorry when I'm famous and getting trillions of hits a day, yes they will!!!


2:01 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The nutty thing is, someone clicking through from your site to a hearing-related product is a qualified potential sale to each of these advertisers. The chance of them actually *buying* something is relatively high, I would think.

If there was enough time in the day to do something about this, a note to the advertisers might be in order.

But I do really think this is a thanks for the fish thing. It's SUMMER and school is out. As my 6-year-old said yesterday after looking at his Kindergarten report card and learning he'd been promoted to Grade 1, "Yahoo! I got in!"

5:54 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was just booted from Google too, and just before a big payoff. But what is very strange is that Google was still selling advertisements on my site! There were HUNDREDS of ads, spanning a hundred pages of a huge site, and all were still active well after they terminated me! I had no account, couldn't log in to AdSense, yet they're selling the ads on my site!

They won't reply to my mail so I'll just have to note all of these advertisers, and contact all of them to make sure that they're not being charged for advertising on my site........ man, I can't believe they have the nerve to do this .....this sounds like big time FRAUD!

2:01 p.m.  

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