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Obviously if they're giving away free advertising it means they'll have to take earnings away from publishers, yea?
And they have nothing to do with AdSense, if an advertiser uses them the publisher still gets paid. Google pays that.
Source? Cuz I just don't believe that. A company as shady as Google is to their publishers, we barely ever see any transparency from the Adsense team.
Its not the image traffic either, that shouldnt effect CTR at all.