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AdSense Policies quietly updated
May 17, 2005
Jenstar

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jenstar us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 2:23 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Unless you have an eagle eye, you likely didn't notice that AdSense updated their Policies today (although it is dated yesterday).

So what has changed? Here is the complete run down of the new AdSense Policies. And remember, when you agree to the AdSense terms, you also agree to abide by the entire policies as well, even when they are updated.

Competitive Ads & Services

There has been a lot of question about what exactly is considered to be a competitive ad that is not allowed by AdSense, and what is allowed. So while it isn't completely clarified, it isn't the "clear as mud" as it was in the previous policies release.

If you have elected to receive contextually-targeted Google ads, this would include all other contextually-targeted ads or links on the same page as Google ads. This would also include ads throughout the site that mimic Google ads or otherwise appear to be associated with Google on your site. Although you may sell ads directly on your site, it is your responsibility to ensure these ads do not mimic Google ads.

A few interesting thoughts on this section:

It seems that AdSense is now not allowing any ads that mimic AdSense to appear on any pages within the entire site - including those pages that are not even running AdSense. There are many publishers who run AdSense, then run their own text ads in an identical format, which would now clearly be against the terms, even if they are on different sections of the same site.

This could also mean that those running non-contextual ad networks could also be in violation if some of those ad networks run ads that appear to mimic AdSense ads (as many advertisers are doing these days), even if they are on completely different pages. This could result in publishers opting out of networks or campaigns if these types of ads could not be removed from the rotation.

And if you are running an alternate ad that mimics AdSense, this would not also be against the terms, since it would appear on the same site as AdSense, even though not on the same page at the same time.

Language

In an odd change, the line Ads must not be displayed on any page with content primarily in an unsupported language has been removed.

Site Content

Under site may not include, the following has been added

Sales or promotion of products that are replicas or imitations of designer goods

I suppose this will stop those publishers selling knockoffs who also display AdSense ads. They will no longer be allowed to have AdSense generating revenue for them on those pages selling or promoting those knockoff products.

Also removed under site content is:

Site must also adhere to Google's WebMaster Guidelines, found at [google.com...] or such other URL as Google may provide from time to time.

However, this is still valid, it was simply repetitive with the Webmaster Guidelines section that appears later in the policies.

Not anything earth shattering like has been found in previous Policies changes, but it is always good to double check you are in compliance and save yourself a warning email.

That's all folks :)

<edit>grammar edit, LOL </edit>

[edited by: Jenstar at 3:00 am (utc) on May 18, 2005]

 

ken_b

WebmasterWorld Senior Member ken_b us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 2:31 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Hmmmmmmmmmm............. gotta think this through a bit.

Thanks for catching this change Jenstar.

Visi

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 2:31 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Well it was quietly done till this post. Thanks Jen for the heads up.

FromRocky

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 2:36 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

The main keyphrase is "do not mimic Google ads" on your site. This also includes the alternate ads.

Jenstar

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jenstar us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 3:02 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Yep, if you run AdSense on a certain site, you cannot run anything that mimics AdSense on that same site. So alternative ads that looked like AdSense were fine before, but now they are not because they will appear on the same site.

Definitely some interesting changes, and it goes the step up with the Yahoo Publisher Network on the horizon.

ownerrim

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 3:19 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

So I guess this squashes the idea of running YPN ads on some pages and adsense on others to do a direct comparison.

I guess if you have several sites on adsense, you could try yahoo by removing all the google adcode from a particular site.

fischermx

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 3:23 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Since Google Text ads are just that, text and links.
What on earth means to "not mimic google ads"?
Should we try another format (width x height) for alternate ads? Yeah, right and then change the site layout dinamically? :(

Or don't use "Title -> Description -> URL"? then what?

Then, use just banner/graphic ads?

What do you think?

creepychris

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 3:29 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Hmmm. The part about mimicing Google Ads kinda bugs me. What are google ads but text with a link? And since we have so much control over colors and borders, ANY text-link ad would be in violation of the TOS since it is possible to create a Google Adsense ad that mimics it.

Or do they mean the original Google text links with the blue borders on white background? (Have they forgotten we have so many options for creating customizing our Google ads?)

<edit> fischermx beat me to it. His complaint is my complaint as well </edit>

Jenstar

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jenstar us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 3:32 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

They have always had the mimic thing in their policies, but now it is extended beyond the page level to the site level.

garyr_h

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 3:38 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

This is a huge blow to publishers who wish to diversify their income and to Yahoo! and MSN.

Also a little too 'monopolistic' if you will...

Powdork

WebmasterWorld Senior Member powdork us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 3:43 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Who says Yahoo ads will mimic Google's?
If the intent is to block Publishers from using YPN then I will still run both and when kicked out just go to YPN only. But I doubt that is their intent.

elsewhen

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 3:48 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

i think "mimic" as "could be confused with". if yahoo ads are clearly marked as yahoo ads, then i am hoping that they will be OK on the same site.

eddy22

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 3:59 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Thanks Jenstar, can u please clarify this ....

"Sales or promotion of products that are replicas or imitations of designer goods "

What if I do not sell/promote these products but have information explaining what these products are....is that permitted?

thanks,
eddy

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 4:07 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Maybe it just means you can't have "Ads by Gooooogle" beneath your annotated text links. :-)

I think advertisers would be happier if the program policies said, "Google ads may not mimic text on your site."

Woz

WebmasterWorld Senior Member woz us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 4:09 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

You would need to clarify this with the Adsense people, but I asked a similar question regarding pages discussing products that are on their no-no list. The answer I received was that as long as the pages were purely informational and not promotional in any way, there would be no problem.

I would strongly suggest you get confirmation from them before continuing any further.

Onya
Woz

fischermx

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 6:27 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

So, what's "mimic"!?
:)

jim_w

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 6:50 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

I think it is the words 'Ads By Gooooogle', for this is the only thing I can think of that they could control ethically. And this would make sense for NO company wants their brands to be confused with ANY OTHER possible brands or knock-offs.

And I think that is their main point, but it was written by some JR., (read fresh out), attorney that is trying to cover them for unforeseen future developments. It's not the first time there was policy written by Google that was so vague that it was impossible to interpret.

ronin

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 9:12 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

This is a little odd.

To date I have used AdSense adpanels on those pages where Google can provide better targeting and AdSonar adpanels on those pages where Quigo can provide better targeting.

Both use a title-description-link format for the individual adverts. (Does that constitute mimicking?)

I wouldn't want to read into the policy changes that I can now only have AdSonar or AdSense on my site exclusively, but not both.

esllou

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 10:49 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

it would be interesting (to say the least) if either YPN or AS decided to go down the same road as some of the banner ad networks and demand "exclusivity" across the site, not just on the page.

AS would lock people into them in that way and it would be a brave person to jump ship to try out YPN

alika

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 10:56 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

With these new changes, I think G is already trying.

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 11:05 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Thanks Jen - what would we all do without you eh?!

TJ

xxxxxpp



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 11:28 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Thanks for notifying us, Jenstar. Guess I'll have to remove some ads on my site who could be mistaken for google ads. Too bad, they filled my pages where google didn't perform nicely, now I have to throw banner in there again.

alika

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 11:34 am on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Even banners, I guess we need to be more careful and make sure that those advertisers mimicking Adsense in their banner ads (Vonage recently, AdKnowledge, etc.) are out of our banner rotation

Jenstar

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jenstar us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 3:01 pm on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Thanks Jen - what would we all do without you eh?!

I'm blushing ;)

sure that those advertisers mimicking Adsense in their banner ads (Vonage recently, AdKnowledge, etc.) are out of our banner rotation

It was the Vontage one that kept coming to mind when I was working on the policies update.

AS would lock people into them in that way and it would be a brave person to jump ship to try out YPN

What I honestly think will happen is there will be a mass rush to sign up for YPN, but not implementing it right away. Then they will anxiously wait to hear what others are saying about it that *have* implemented it, and then make their own decision based on that.

"Sales or promotion of products that are replicas or imitations of designer goods "

What if I do not sell/promote these products but have information explaining what these products are....is that permitted?

As Woz said, check with AdSense. They will likely send a quality checker to your site for a peek, and make their decision based on that.

eddy22

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 3:17 pm on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

As always, thanks Jenstar :)

clearvision

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 4:42 pm on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Thanks Jenstar! You are so much appreciated!

Why didn't we get an email that this small, but mighty, adjustment was made to the terms? Not that in this instance there was a challenge, but if you didn't see the update, think of how many of us would be going against TOS and not even know it!

Jenstar

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jenstar us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 5:03 pm on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Why didn't we get an email that this small, but mighty, adjustment was made to the terms

Since it was a change to the policies, they don't always seem to send out an email on policy changes specifically. But with the other features updated, there will likely be an email update sent in the next day or two.

ownerrim

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 5:15 pm on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

"What I honestly think will happen is there will be a mass rush to sign up for YPN, but not implementing it right away. Then they will anxiously wait to hear what others are saying about it that *have* implemented it, and then make their own decision based on that."

You may be right on the money with that.

Sally Stitts

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 6:01 pm on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

Excellent.
You always explain Google's pronouncements better than Google does.

You save the web community many countless hours with your right-now, right-on analysis. Many of us greatly appreciate your efforts. Thanks again, Jen!

ken_b

WebmasterWorld Senior Member ken_b us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 6797 posted 6:13 pm on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

But with the other features updated,...

Huh? What updates?

Did I sleep through some other feature updates again?

This 37 message thread spans 2 pages: 37 ( [1] 2 > >
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