Also, not everyone is suffering.
Tiers. Lucky ones. People who chose wisely in what niche they chose.
But in reality you have to look at what types of comments are being made now and then compare that to what types of posts were being made a few years ago. Obviously the positive to negative ratio has changed legitimately. That is because it's the reality for more people. It's not fake and to suggest that everything is lovely is not accurate.
All you can do is compare. To suggest the whiners (like me) are NOT indicative of the reality? The saying has been around forever. If there is smoke, there is fire. If you see a place like this full of bad experiences compared to 5 years ago then OBVIOUSLY something is happening for the negative.
The way I see it, there will always be happy campers. It's far better to make a work environment really crappy and have people leave or take early retirement than to hand out pink slips to 50% of your employees. If you're a massive corporation, that might just affect public perception. The smart way is to just let it die a natural death and meanwhile keep certain tiers alive and well to counter the negativity.
I always come here because to me this is (was) the best place to measure where things are at. If it's negative, there must be something to it. If I'm the only one bickering, then obviously it's more to do with me than the Google.
Obviously what doesn't make sense is the facelift aspects of Adsense. The transparency, the online help workshops, the email support, etc. If I really wanted to be cynical I would suggest it counters what I see in the "live" ad testing which has trashed my earnings. It's like getting a hug and a punch to the stomach at the same time. It's confusing and it makes no sense. In my opinion the punch to the gut is more the reality of it. Oh, but then the argument will be it's not the ads, it's my site or my traffic source. Yes, I know how the thinking goes.
May is going to be as bad a April for myself. Obviously I'm not alone on that and really that is what this discussion is for or about. A comparison of where each of us is at and possible explanations. The situation is obvious to me.
The less reliance on publishers like me means tinkering with SERPS is now possible. Those become less important because sites like mine are less and less necessary. Traffic doesn't need to get fed to my sites like it once did. There is something much better, it just took a while for it to manifest. Meanwhile the Google owned properties have expanded and the middle man is just that. A pain and a leak in revenues streams. I get and understand being replaced and why.
And yes there will always be certain tiers out there singing praises and that there is nothing mysterious about anything and it's all good. I want to be that person so I won't give up either. However I see all this for what it is. It's all good until Siri, Cortana and Now are able to provide your information on their pages, and thus cutting out the hassle of the middle man.