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This 52 message thread spans 2 pages: 52 ( [1] 2 > >     
Improved AdSense Filter - Block Advertisers Within 1 Hour
Plus Ability to Block Entire Categories of Ads
martinibuster

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 2:49 am on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

As part of Google's response to the Political Ad dustup [adsense.blogspot.com], Google has promised to give publishers more control over the ads shown on their sites, plus faster effectiveness of filtered sites. Instead of six to ten hours for the filter to take effect, they're promising blocked ads will disappear within an hour.

We've heard your feedback about how quickly filters take effect and the ability to block specific categories of ads... we're working towards filters in the future that will take effect in less than an hour. We'll also continue improving the Ad Review Center, giving you ways to block entire categories of ads in addition to individual ads. We are also working on ways for you to establish guidelines for the type of ads that will be acceptable to your users, so you can "set it and forget it," while feeling comfortable that users will have a good ad experience.

Is this something publishers will find useful?

 

Malibucreek

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 4:05 am on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Yaaaay!

I would like it if one of the categories that could be blocked was "all run-of-network" ads. IME, these are always terrible, and promote banner blindness due to their ubiquity on the Web. I want the ads on my site to be a unique blend of content, tailored for my site. That's always been AdSense's strength. Why dilute that with RON ads?

Thanks to the G team for listening and getting on this. It is much appreciated.

Lame_Wolf

WebmasterWorld Senior Member lame_wolf us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 5:13 am on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

It is useful, but how about them giving us unlimited channels.

zett

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 7:47 am on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Is this something publishers will find useful?

In principle, yes.

However, the wording of the announcement does not look promising to me:

we're working towards filters in the future that will take effect in less than an hour. We'll also continue improving the Ad Review Center, giving you ways to block entire categories of ads in addition to individual ads. We are also working on ways for you to establish guidelines for the type of ads that will be acceptable to your users, so you can "set it and forget it,"

...in the future...

We have been requesting better filters for years. ASA again and again promised to relay the feedback to the responsible persons in MV. Apparently, our collective feedback has been ignored for ages. And now they start working on something? What a joke.

...Ad Review Center...

So the Ad Review Center will also take care of contextual ads. Until now I was under the impression that the Ad Review Center was for placement targeted ads only? (I opted out of placement targeted ads, so as a consequence the Ad Review Center is gone as well.) Some explanation is needed here. Are the improved filters just for placement targeted ads? Or will all publishers get access to the Ad Review Center, despite having opted out of placement targeted ads?

...establish guidelines...

I just hope they don't mess up this one. Again, this group has made several suggestions on how to implement such a filter, e.g. based on keywords (or even better: advertiser IDs). Please ask real publishers for their feedback prior to implementing the "guidelines". Please! Otherwise we might get another unusable feature.

And while you're at it, why not increase the filter size to, say, "unlimited"?

stuartmcdonald

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 8:56 am on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Absolutely == hopefully dating sites will be one of the categories

martinibuster

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 9:47 am on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Zett, their timeline for speed is within weeks.

Over the next couple weeks, we plan to improve the speed of your filters...

true_INFP

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 10:45 am on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Jason Miller, AdSense Product Manager, wrote:
Our automated targeting technology will never understand your users as well as you, so it's important that you have the ability to control their ad experience.

Wow. I... Just wow.

Looks like we can still hope to get more control over AdSense on our own sites.

netmeg

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 1:05 pm on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Wow, this is great. See now, I toldja - they just didn't anticipate the way the election ads took over or the publisher reaction. This is actually the fastest I've ever seen AdSense react to publisher concerns.

ken_b

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



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 2:15 pm on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

It will be interesting to see how they implement this.

farmboy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member farmboy us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 3:22 pm on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Is this something publishers will find useful?

I think the devil will be in the details.

Will Google or the advertiser decide how an ad is categorized?

If a category is broad, a publisher might throw the baby out with the bath water when blocking a category.

If a category is narrow, it might require a lot of time to seek out and block all the unwanted categories.

And will the blocking be by site or account? I may not like some ads on my site 1 but love them on my site 2.

Our automated targeting technology will never understand your users as well as you, so it's important that you have the ability to control their ad experience.

Again, the devil is in the details.

Suppose I write Google and tell them I understand my users and they will click on ads for personal injury lawyers, cancer and all these other words on this high CPC list I have developed? Somehow I doubt Google will say, "OK. You know your users better than we do"

FarmBoy

farmboy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member farmboy us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 4:02 pm on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

I just went to the source and read the first two paragraphs under the "Publisher Ad Control" section. Other than how fast site blocking takes effect, there may not be much that is new anytime soon. For example,

As we've expanded to new forms of advertiser targeting, we've also added controls for the ads that can appear on your sites. Our automated targeting technology will never understand your users as well as you, so it's important that you have the ability to control their ad experience. For example, we mentioned earlier this week that tools such as the Competitive Ad Filter and Ad Review Center are designed for you to prevent specific ads from appearing on your pages.

To me, that sounds like they're just reminding everyone the Competitive Ad Filter and the Ad Review Center are the tools they developed for publishers to control ads that appear. It doesn't sound as if they are planning anything new.

As for when:

Over the next couple weeks, we plan to improve the speed of your filters, and we're working towards filters in the future that will take effect in less than an hour. We'll also continue improving the Ad Review Center, giving you ways to block entire categories of ads in addition to individual ads. We are also working on ways for you to establish guidelines for the type of ads that will be acceptable to your...

That sounds like they hope to speed up the ad blocking within the next couple of weeks. But for everything else, it's just "we're working on it."

FarmBoy

zett

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 5:46 pm on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

FarmBoy:

Your post is spot-on. I think they do not have anything significant in the works. Two reasons:

1) Google has no immediate need for improved filters. In a weak economy they will have no problems finding new publishers. For each publisher who leaves, there will be new publishers signing up. (The quality of these new "publishers" is a different issue.)

2) In the past, Google has made it a point to not implement additional tools for publishers. They have ignored our feature requests for several years, so why the sudden change now? Why now?

Indeed, the Adsense system is probably so screwed up that they simply cannot increase the filter size (uh-oh), or add new features like keyword filtering on ad copy or domain. You see, if they are sooo proud announcing that the blocking soon will happen within one hour (instead of seven to twelve hours) - that tells you something, doesn't it?

And blocking advertisers will probably never happen. They would be giving away too much crucial information.

koan

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 6:53 pm on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

To me it would be important that they implement these features with the option of blocking something on a "per site" basis or for the full account. If you have a site on airplanes and another one on 60s music, you would want to block ads for "Jefferson Airplane New Collection" in your airplanes site (or the music category), but it would be obviously welcomed in the 60s music site.

Right now I don't even know what sites the ads are targeting in the Ads Review Center. The way it's set up, it's also difficult to just flip through pages and pages of advertisers without any kind of organization.

So yeah, the devil is in the details.

himalayaswater

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 7:48 pm on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

They do not have any competition, so they set rules. They are now 800 pound gorilla. Yahoo / MSN on other hand should open their network all webmasters around the world. Then only Google will start to listen to us. Since last 2 years I'm demanding css and custom font format but they do not care.

Scurramunga

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 11:30 pm on Nov 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

I am afraid that both farmboy and zett are as close to the mark as anyone will ever get.

swa66

WebmasterWorld Senior Member swa66 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 1:09 am on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

If they'd care, they could reread what we've posted here dozens of times.

On the odd chance somebody with the power to make a difference over at the googleplex does read this a summary of how to give publishers more control over what ads appear:

  • Negative keywords in the ad copy (e.g. "free")
  • Negative keywords in the URLs (e.g. ebay)
  • negative pattern matching: if the ad matches a regexp I don't want it (e..g 800 phone numbers)
  • Ban ads where the display URL differs from the actual URL (why they allow these affiliates that have nothing done themselves beyond a redirect is beyond me)
  • ban by advertiser (once a bad advertiser, always a bad advertiser)
  • Better reporting (to find them!)
  • minimum value on click (to keep out the worst of the worst)

More elaborate version over at: [webmasterworld.com...]

But I somehow doubt they care enough to actually implement it properly beyond a token measure to shut us up.

martinibuster

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 1:56 am on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

Negative keywords in the ad copy (e.g. "free")

You might not want to click those ads, but your site visitors may.

Negative keywords in the URLs (e.g. ebay)

You can block them in the competitive filter. Other than that, excessive filtering and blocking is going to result in less competition which depresses cost per click.

negative pattern matching: if the ad matches a regexp I don't want it (e..g 800 phone numbers)

Ads with phone numbers actually receive good CTR. There are several discussions about that in the AdWords forum.

ban by advertiser (once a bad advertiser, always a bad advertiser)

The definition of bad is too general to be meaningful. What is a bad advertiser? Ringtones may be inappropriate for many sites except niches like celebrity/photo/recipe/game sites. But that's a relevance/appropriateness issue.

But I somehow doubt they care enough to actually implement it properly beyond a token measure to shut us up.

Too many cooks etc. That list is a total hijacking of their algo. Has less to do with controlling offensive or inappropriate advertisers than it has for trying to squeeze more clicks from specific advertisers by excluding the rest of the market. But if you exclude the rest of the market and only allow those you think are good advertisers, those good advertisers are going to be paying less because you squeezed out their competition. Where is the percentage in that?

swa66

WebmasterWorld Senior Member swa66 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 4:50 am on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

I'm not trying to be given the tools to maximize revenue, I'm trying to get unwanted ads out. E.g.
  • Every ad I ever saw with "free" in it was a scam of some sort. I'd like to see the advertiser paying for ads and genuinely giving whatever he was advertising for away for free and not trying to hurt whoever gets those "free" gifts (think malware).
  • ebay: there are literally dozens of ccTLDs (ebay.at, ebay.be, ebay.ca, ebay.de, ebay.es, ebay.fr,...), each with their own ebay clone [even linked in the backend] (and that's just one of the problem sites), it takes too much space in the competitive filter with it's meager 200 spots to even ad one of these networks. Moreover the abstract concepts they advertise for simply cannot exist (you cannot sell something you can't own), and anybody with a brain would not click on them anyway except for the curiosity of it. And well, then the traffic doesn't convert ... yeah wonder why.
  • Why would one click if the phone number is right there. But I gave it as an example of why a keyword isn't enough in some cases and why regexps are preferable. It's just that those I saw with phone numbers again aren't the most honest advertisers out there for sure.
  • "bad": I've been confronted with ads promoting pedophilia on my site in a far away geo location. No excuse needed to ban such an advertiser forever. Sure Google will claim they banned the creep. But I would -for sure- like a belt and suspenders approach for these [where I live the authorities let you rot in jail for that kind of stuff].

That list is a total hijacking of their algo.

I don't really care about an algorithm. Maybe the one who invented it does, but to be honest which algorithm it is is irrelevant. Those things can easily change and should not have sentimental value. Bottom line is that it is a market with people buying and people selling and right now Google only caters to the needs of one side (the advertiser who buy ad space).
Not even giving us a minimum price below which we don't want to sell is just one of those things showing they don't want us to have control and don't care for our needs. If you need more proof: just look at the activity level of the adsense-advisor vs. the adwords-advisor. I just don't see the same one-side only view in other markets (take the ebay example for something online, but take just about any other market.

Selling direct is an option, and while I had a few deals, keeping it all flowing is hard, that's why you want the market to be somewhat organized.

But ... living outside of the US there is little viable alternative (let alone that they would have a decent inventory of ads)

I'm fully aware they need to deal with publishers cheating the system, but they do have quite a lot of bad advertisers too, and they don't seem to be doing much against them but to artificially drive up the price of the ads (which is also a serious hijack of their precious algorithm).

I think of the current algo as a patchwork (landing page quality score, smart-pricing, ...) , not as something that is transparent and useful in setting a fair price due to it's utter lack of transparency. It's a algo that started in determining what to show next to/on top of SERPs. Google was the *only* publisher at the time. Opening it up to the rest of the world might be visionary of them, but they forgot to cater to our needs beyond giving us a (large) piece of the financial pie. But in the long run they'll need to cater to those other needs too if they want to maintain a good relation beyond sending us money every month.

true_INFP

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 11:12 am on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

Let's be balanced. I believe that Google actually knows very well that giving more control to publishers increases their (Google's) revenue. They have proven that. As that's why they let publishers choose the colors, remove the borders (blend), insert the <adsense_ignore> and <adsense_emphasize> tags, etc. They just need to go on.

For example, the font size. It is should not change erratically by the factor of 20. Keyword filtering is a must. This is about basic editorial control. I don't want certain kind of ads to appear on our site. Why should the only option be removing AdSense from our site entirely? Is that wise business-wise? And so on, and so on. If you improve the AdSense system, the publishers will soon make you more money than AdWords for Search does.

farmboy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member farmboy us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 2:09 pm on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

They have ignored our feature requests for several years, so why the sudden change now?

I don't know that there is much of a sudden change. A sudden response or acknowledgment, but not much change, not yet anyway.

Why now?

Based on what I've read here and elsewhere, I think that can be summarized in three words:

California Proposition Eight

FarmBoy

netmeg

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 4:31 pm on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

It's not just the political ads. There are advertisers tossing up hundreds (or thousands) of sites that are almost exactly the same, pushing the same scammy affiliate offer in order to multiple serve the same ads over and over. On a page with a single ad block this morning, I found three out of five ads for the same weight loss scam going to almost exactly the same page. AdSense preview tool and going to some other pages show hundreds if not thousands more; I spent half the morning gather screenshots, WHOIS records and sent it all to AdSense *and* AdWords. It would be impossible to block all these - there are more of them than we have slots in our filters for them. But if we could block by category - that might do it, IF Google is actually monitoring categories. One of the main problems I had with the Referral ads were that Google wasn't monitoring the advertisers, and some of them would add their products to every single category, so that for example if I had a page on car repair and I selected the auto category to rotate ads from, I'd get travel and ink cartridges and I dunno what all.

true_INFP

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 6:15 pm on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

Yep. Categories are going to be useless if they are not monitored and enforced (which is IMO infeasible considering the immense number of ads).

The feasible/correct way to do that is to block the advertiser by his or her AdWords ID.

[edited by: true_INFP at 6:16 pm (utc) on Nov. 9, 2008]

netmeg

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 8:22 pm on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

I don't think they're likely to give us the AdWords ID.

true_INFP

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 9:44 pm on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

We don't need to know the IDs. We just need to block by them. If necessary, they could tell us just some hash of the ID.

[edited by: true_INFP at 9:44 pm (utc) on Nov. 9, 2008]

Sally Stitts

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 10:40 pm on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

Nutmeg-
I found the exact same 3 weight loss crap ads this morning, on multiple pages, NONE OF WHICH are about weight loss. You know, Jimmiesweightloss, Johnniesweightloss and Suziesweightloss (not actual, just fake examples). ALL THREE are pushing the same affiliate product, and look like they were all created by the same person.

I immediately put all 3 URLs in my filter. But I am not hopeful. Those pages are probably going to get moved back to YPN, as soon as I see what the AdSense replacement ads are. That usually takes about 10 hours - too long! Because of the long filter delay, once I move them, those pages will STAY with YPN, to prevent any further shenanigans. I will eat the loss in revenue. Happily. Unrelated, poor quality ads make my pages look like poor quality. I won't tolerate this.

Google has made some great progress over the last few months, getting rid of junk.
They are not done yet. Conniving schemers aren't going to disappear on their own.
.

[edited by: Sally_Stitts at 11:19 pm (utc) on Nov. 9, 2008]

icedowl

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 11:17 pm on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

Sally, there's a lot more than just 3 of those weight loss crap ads. Keep looking and use the preview tool.

Sally Stitts

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 11:24 pm on Nov 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

icedowl -
Thanks - I have read your comments a lot - good enough for me.
I am Mac only, so no preview tool for me.
I am just going to remove them right now.

<edit>Done! AdSense is great, but it requires A LOT of vigilance! Publishers need stronger tools, as martinibuster suggests in post #1.

[edited by: Sally_Stitts at 11:36 pm (utc) on Nov. 9, 2008]

farmboy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member farmboy us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 1:29 am on Nov 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

I found the exact same 3 weight loss crap ads this morning, on multiple pages, NONE OF WHICH are about weight loss. You know, Jimmiesweightloss, Johnniesweightloss and Suziesweightloss (not actual, just fake examples). ALL THREE are pushing the same affiliate product, and look like they were all created by the same person.

Is this affiliate product converting and paying well enough to justify someone putting a lot of dollars into advertising all of a sudden or has someone figured out a way to get cheap clicks?

FarmBoy

signor_john



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 4:55 am on Nov 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

AdSense is great, but it requires A LOT of vigilance! Publishers need stronger tools, as martinibuster suggests in post #1.

Unfortunately, it isn't that simple. Some topics or sites will always get more than their fair share of bottom-feeding ads, simply because there isn't enough inventory of attractive, higher-paying ads to meet publisher demand. (This problem isn't unique to AdSense: Look at late-night TV shows or cable channels, and you'll see junky commercials with annoying carnival barkers who are selling miracle absorbent towels or car-polishing kits.) If you feel compelled to spend a lot of time vetting low-paying AdSense ads, both locally and with the preview tool, AdSense may be more trouble than it's worth--unless, of course, you truly feel that there aren't any other revenue options available to you and you're desperate for the income.

zett

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3782375 posted 9:06 am on Nov 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

Unfortunately, it isn't that simple. Some topics or sites will always get...

Defending Adsense is not very helpful in this discussion.

The original topic was NOT about filtering low-paying ads, but about filtering inappropriate ads, e.g. political ads or ads that do not comply with local laws.

This 52 message thread spans 2 pages: 52 ( [1] 2 > >
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