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What does EU GDPR means for Adsense?

Question about GDPR and Adsense.

     
5:38 pm on Mar 24, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Question: What does EU GDPR means for Adsense?

Most of the Adsense income is from interest based ads. Will this be affected by the EU GDPR?
I'm concerned because today with the latest update for my Android Phone, I got asked for permission related to interest based ads. (Maybe it is because I did disable it before. This is to see the normal ads on my pages with Adsense. But I'm still concerned.)
8:24 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Schrems files legal cases worth €7bn against Facebook under GDPR [irishtimes.com...]

Virtual pizza to everyone from me when Google gets sued.
8:39 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Schrems files legal cases worth €7bn against Facebook under GDPR [irishtimes.com...]

So I talked too fast :-)

Virtual pizza to everyone from me when Google gets sued.

Your article mentions that Google is sued too, about its Android OS.

I guess that @EUMember will announce plenty of lawsuits in Germany.

[edited by: QuaterPan at 8:52 am (utc) on May 25, 2018]

8:47 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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It's interesting how this whole thing appears to be backfiring.

Rather than give people rights over their data, as was surely intended, it is just putting up roadblocks all over the internet.

I've visited many "big" sites in the last few days where a banner partially or fully obscures the page and offers only 2 options - agree to personalised ads, or go away.

It seems that the big players have decided to continue to show personalised ads and are happy to bully people into accepting them, thus providing "explicit consent". Will they lose much traffic? I suppose it depends how desperate you are to see the content.

The smaller players (I'm guessing many in this thread) have turned off personalised ads and will presumably suffer a big drop in income.

Huffington Post is the worst I have seen so far.

I've also visited one of my regular American websites and been told that because of GDPR I may no longer view their content.

Thank you, GDPR.
9:00 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Rather than give people rights over their data, as was surely intended, it is just putting up roadblocks all over the internet.
...
That's a great idea. From my point of view It will be much easier to give users control over their data through regulating the market of Internet browsers (simple features like turn on/turn off when browsing, something like VPN etc.). In such cases you won't need to re-build the whole EU Internet area, you just need to re-build on how users getting access when browsing. Why regulators can't go this way?

[edited by: Cyril_TechWebsites at 9:03 am (utc) on May 25, 2018]

9:03 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I'm going to see how earnings pan out over the next few days. If they are significantly down I'm going back to personalised ads. I will work on the assumption that mine will not be the first Adsense account to get banned and I'll see the warning shot coming.

I don't object to the GDPR in principle, however I don't think it is fair on smaller publishers to be given 3 seconds to try to educate visitors and then pitch their case as to why a visitor should allow them to run personalised ads....

I imagine if you ran a survey and asked "Would you allow 3rd party multinational companies to track your movements across the internet?", nearly everybody would say "no". However, if you asked "Would you allow small companies to submit anonymous data to help keep them afloat and the internet free?" you would get a very different answer...
9:04 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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That's a great idea. From my point of view It will be much easier to give users control over their data through regulating the market of Internet browsers (simple features like turn on/turn off when browsing, something like VPN etc.). Why regulators can't go this way?

This is the purpose of the ePrivacy Regulation which was supposed to start today too, but the text was not ready on time. It will come later this year, or next year.

The draft stipulates that when the browser (or a new update) is installed for the first time, users must "set" whether they accept cookies and, if so, what kind of cookies. Since 90 % of users will choose a restrictive setting, thus in particular not allow third party cookies, "the regulation effectively shuts off the device" (according to VPRT, the German Association of Private Broadcasters and Telemedia). The regulation does not provide for an automatic mechanism which, with the user's subsequent consent, releases the browser. In fact, this means that cross-domain tracking and the storage of information about the end device by third parties are prohibited. Retargeting models are virtually impossible to implement.
[eprivacy.eu...]
9:25 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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@QuaterPan Thanks for the great info.

The situation allows to imagine that in such way the EU authorities cleaning up some market space in order to promote own search engines and networks for EU internet traffic (like Qwant project or others). Maybe the time has come when all publishers will be in need to implement changes to show ads for different geo locations and use different ad networks (Adsense for USA traffic, AdConion or AdPepper for EU traffic which will be compliant with GDPR etc.)? It looks like in such case the money from EU will stay in EU. But it's important to know if the infrastructure for that is ready?
10:01 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Another option would be to use Media.net for monetizing your websites. I have received an email from them a few days ago saying that as a publisher I don't need to do anything about consent etc because they use non-personalized ads. Basically publishers don't need to do anything if using Media.net , simple and clear.
10:08 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Yep, Media.net ads have always been related to site's content.

In other news, Instapaper has blocked their services in EU because GDPR.
10:12 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Another option would be to use Media.net for monetizing your websites. I have received an email from them a few days ago saying that as a publisher I don't need to do anything about consent etc because they use non-personalized ads.

The problem with media.net, is that, they are also serving doubleclick ads, which have tracking cookies.
10:16 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I would wait to see how it plays out. Things are in flux at the moment but they will settle down.

The Guardian is interesting. They have a "I want to manage relevant advertising option" which says:

Choosing this option will immediately reduce the number of advertising partners who will serve you with relevant adverts, although you may still see some advertising that has been tailored to you. However, if you wish to disable cookies on The Guardian, including advertising cookies, you will need to take further steps. Please follow the instructions in our cookie policy.

Another example is the UK Met Office. They simply have added this:

The Met Office values your privacy: We’ve updated our Privacy policy.

At the other end of the scale is Forbes.
10:27 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I know it's just half of the day, but since today i just see huge drop of RPM from 3 months average $4.5 to $3.25. It is due to i checked non-personalised ads. CPC seems same, but CTR went down (as we expected). We have daily 10 000 visits, so its $12.5 loss per day, $375 per month.

After 1 week we will have more data, but it seems rly bad.
10:27 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Does anyone know if the visitor needs to opt in to the various cookies or can they automatically be opted in and they choose to opt out?

As mentioned by others some sites are choosing to let visitors opt out and while others are getting consent to opt in.

Bit a shambled all this with no clear guidelines.
10:29 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I think I will be adopting the Guardian's model. Seems to be implicit consent but with clear directions how to opt out. Not quite compliance, but within the spirit of GDPR, maybe.

Not liking the CPC on a lot of my sites today. Notable exceptions are the more global ones, where CPC is markedly up.

At the other end of the scale is Forbes.

Forbes aren't doing that much more - just that they have a full screen consent. Probably easier to hit 'OK', than the back button...
10:44 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Further back in this thread I read that consent has to be recorded. How are people doing that?
10:48 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Not liking the CPC on a lot of my sites today. Notable exceptions are the more global ones, where CPC is markedly up.


What I'm seeing today is more demand for contextual than personal. I'm guessing that's because there are far more cookies in the pool than advertisers anticipated due to the implicit consent option most of the big hitters have gone for. Therefore it could be beneficial to be running non personalised ads at the moment.
11:00 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Everything is looking pretty much the same on my site today, except that CTR is actually a bit higher than usual this morning. Everything else seems normal. It's almost like all of this worrying was for nothing.
11:07 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Yes, earning is down today for me too.
11:22 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Chicago Tribune and LA Times both blocked to whole of the EU

we are now in full farce mode
11:25 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Hard to know what is driving prices today. I imagine advertisers will be hanging back a bit, and this might be what is distorting earnings more than anything else.

Given there was only a reported historic 5% difference in earnings between contextual and personalised ads in my account I am a little surprised to see CPC down by ~25% today.

This weekend is a bank holiday in the UK, so one of my biggest earners of the year. I'm not taking any chances and will be back on personalised for the next few days.
11:41 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Earnings do seem to be down today. Starting to feel more like a Saturday than a Friday, which is odd since EU visitors make up only a small percentage of my traffic.

Actually, when I look at my AdSense targeting types this morning, almost all of the revenue I do have has come from personalized ads. For some reason, contextual earnings have dropped down to almost nothing. You'd think it would be the opposite.
11:44 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Maybe because the businesses located in EU but targeting the US/Canada are not advertising today? If that's the case, the earnings would drop even if we have zero traffic from EU.
11:46 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Something positive to share.

Considering that 25% of my Adsense earning was coming from the EU, I started an experimentation, 3 weeks ago. I simply stopped displaying ads to EU visitors. For the first week, my earning was down roughly 25%, which was expected. However, since my earning increased by 50%! (my ranking and traffic increased too). My theory, only a theory, is that, by getting ride of EU ads, this improved my adsense quality score, which certainly has an impact about the smart pricing system. EU ads had a lower CTR than US ones, so now my CTR is much higher, which certainly is more valuable and rewarded by Adsense.

And about the ranking and traffic improvement: my pages are loading much faster for EU visitors, since there are no more ads, so, if Google Chrome is effectively measuring the speed of sites, may be this is helping with the ranking.
11:52 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Unfortunately, with this being a holiday weekend in both the US and the UK, I won't really see the impact of this until next week. But earnings are certainly down this morning, more than expected.
11:54 am on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Something positive to share.

Not if 80% of your earnings come from the EU...
12:03 pm on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Ya. Bad timing for GDPR. Memorial Day weekend in the States starts today so numbers won't be where they should be anyways.
12:04 pm on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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It's probably not unreasonable to expect a drop in earnings today while advertisers assess the situation and explore their options.
12:15 pm on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I'm new to Ad sense. I want to ask does the EU GDPR will affect my ad sense which is of Pakistan. and if it affects is it good or not for my site. And how can i make it not affect my site's ad sense?
12:16 pm on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I think this is new in the adsense help: [support.google.com...]
I understand now that consent for NPA ads is needed and also i think they could cancel accounts as in the first paragraph it says "...and can still work with Google publisher products."
Publishers may choose several different paths to obtaining consent from their EEA users to comply with Google’s updated EU Consent policy, and can still work with Google publisher products.
12:41 pm on May 25, 2018 (gmt 0)

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It sounds like there is also an age consent authorization to obtain [support.google.com...] ... I understand why some sites prefer to simply block all EU visitors ...
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