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Making Money With AdSense? Here Is A Friendly Warning

by DiTesco on February 2, 2011

Google AdSense Banned
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Recently, Google has announced that it is taking a greater stance to control search results quality by providing better relevance, freshness and comprehensiveness. A stronger policy on websites that “copy” content is also in their menu and it does not stop there. Since more and more “autoblog” type websites are polluting the internet, so are the search results. These “autoblog” type websites benefit from “other people’s content” and most of them are using AdSense as their primary means of monetization. There are also several “AdSense Revenue Sharing” programs around and in accordance with this recent announcement, I believe that greater attention should be paid, if you are using Google AdSense as a means to making money online.

So What’s This AdSense Friendly Warning All About?

Google AdSense official blog made this announcement two days ago:

Fiction: I shouldn’t be held responsible if users post content on my site or network that violates AdSense policies.

Fact: You are responsible for ensuring that all of your content, including user-generated content such as forum posts, blog comments or outside feeds, is in compliance with AdSense policies (updated August 2010) on any page or site for which you’ve enabled AdSense ads.

As you probably know, the AdSense Network constantly reviews websites for content, to ensure that they are not only safe but equally relevant for all interested parties, these being, advertisers, users and publishers. Publishers expect the network to deliver only quality ads on their websites and on the other hand, Advertisers expect their ads to be published with the highest standards. An example given by Google is an advertiser trying to market “baby” products. Can you imagine if their ads appear next to websites where violent or inappropriate content are published? Not cool! This example, maybe, is just very close to being a reality and I believe that this is the reason why, among other things, a “stronger stance” is being sent out.

Now here is the important part and pay attention to this:

Making sure content complies with our policies can be complex when factoring in user-generated content. Keeping tabs on the hundreds (or even thousands!) of videos, blog posts, photos, tweets, and comments that can come in every day is a massive undertaking. However, you are ultimately responsible for all sites on which you have placed your ad code, regardless of whether you own or have produced the content…..

….We know how hard you work to make sure that your sites are of the highest quality and free of adult content, unoriginal content, or anything else that may violate policies and we thank you for your efforts. When advertisers, publishers, and users know they can trust the integrity of our advertising environment, everyone wins.

So what does this really mean? Notice the bolded words up there? I can give you one example right now. Say you have joined a network where they share a revenue with you in exchange for something (membership, article submission, photos, file sharing, etc.). That website allows you to put your own AdSense codes, and so, you get all excited and do it with the hopes of increasing your AdSense revenue potential. Say for some reason, that website gets flagged for content violation from Google AdSense and gets into trouble. The way I read this, is that you are now equally in trouble and will most likely get notified to take action on it (yeah, Google will give you a head start and slam the doors on you if you don’t do anything).

Another example. You are a “young” and “inexperienced” blogger and eager to get noticed. You ask for people to guest post for you. You announce on your blog that you are now open for guest posts and suddenly you get a “tidal wave” of guest, sending you articles. You read it, liked it and bam, you publish it. Now, the big question. Was that article original? Did you even bother to look? Was it from a reputable blogger? Might it be violating any copyright issues? That content is now on your website and running the risk of being “captured” by Google and considered as an unoriginal content publisher (this must be hard for auto bloggers, lol), or “something” that is not in compliance with their policies. You are now or your way to getting your AdSense account disabled.

Anyway, I can think of a lot of other examples, but the general idea here is for you to know that the AdSense Network, along with Google’s Affiliate Network, is on to a much stronger policy compliance than ever before. This is just to let you know that you should use greater care before handing over your AdSense code or as the example above, verify content for possible “duplicity”. Keep it safe, and if it is still unclear for you, here are some additional tips to get your AdSense account banned very quickly :).

So, do you think I am interpreting this “warning” correctly? Do you have different views? Let’s discuss them, this can be an important debate.

To your success!

Recently, Google has announced that it is taking a greater stance to control search results quality by providing better relevance, freshness and comprehensiveness.
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+DiTesco is a Business and Inbound Marketing Consultant, and founder of iBlogzone.com. iBlogzone's main objective is to help startups and small business owners achieve success in their online ventures. | More About Me and my Consulting Services.

Francisco has written 695 articles at iBlogzone.com

1

Roberta Clark

February 2, 2011 at 7:46 pm

Great information, I never thought that much about it. Maybe it’s because my AdSense revenue isn’t enough for it to matter? I’m trying to focus more on affiliate partnerships with people I know and trust. I use MMS too, love it.

2 DiTesco February 3, 2011 at 4:05 pm

Hi Roberta. Yeah, I can see why you have not given it much of a thought :) Anyway, at least you are now aware, in case you decide to increment use of AdSense in the future.

Thanks for stopping by

3 Extreme John February 2, 2011 at 11:40 pm

When your as big as Google it’s your way or the highway.

4 DiTesco February 3, 2011 at 4:06 pm

This is the price to pay when people in a way gets very dependent on a service. Although I am glad that Google is taking action to “at least” clean up the messy stuff out there. We’ll see.

5 Amr Boghdady February 3, 2011 at 8:10 am

Thanks for the warning DiTesco.
Although I doubt Google is targeting people with normal blogs like us. I think they have people with auto-blogs in mind.
These people have their whole blogs made up of duplicate posts, which is certainly against Google’s policies..

6 DiTesco February 3, 2011 at 4:09 pm

Hi Amr. I totally agree with you. The “stricter” policy compliance certainly has been awaken due to the number of increasing SPLOGS out there. Obviously within the process, some “relevant” websites can be picked up accidentally and if this happens, Google does give the chance for reconsideration. If you are complying with their TOS, no problem.

Thanks for taking the time to leave your views. Appreciate it

7 Andreas February 3, 2011 at 12:53 pm

Google must take a stance against the billions of adsense pages with duplicate information that do not add any value for users, due to outside pressure.
They actually do not want it because they make millions with these pages each month.

8 DiTesco February 3, 2011 at 4:12 pm

I see where you are going Andreas and so it seems that you are “updated” with what’s happening recently between a tiny “cold war” in between search engines. One says you are copying and the other is insinuating “click fraud”. This is no good, in my opinion, but it does “shake up” things a bit and ultimately better experience for the user.

9 Patricia@lavender February 3, 2011 at 3:21 pm

Hi DiTesco

Wow after reading this post I’m glad I don’t have Adsense on my blog! Had it on a website I had a few years ago and it didn’t work for me. So this time round with my blog decided against it.

Hope people who do have Adsense will read this post and heed the warning.

Patricia Perth Australia

10 DiTesco February 3, 2011 at 4:03 pm

Hi Patricia. Don’t have AdSense on your website? Why not, lol. I understand why you are not using it as it may display ads that are your direct competitors and obviously that does not make sense. For those who market their own products, it is not really recommended, unless you can filter competitive ads via the AdSense category Filtering feature.

Thanks for stopping by.

11 Justin Germino February 3, 2011 at 3:34 pm

I read this update and think it may hurt auto blogs, I very carefully read the ToS and there is an ability to report any site you think is in violation by clicking on the Google Ads button on the ad itself. This is a good way to penalize sites that read in your content and you see they are running Google Ads, you can flag them and hit them where it hurts.

I wonder if this would affect a site like BlogEngage which is an RSS Syndication but also runs it’s own blog and only duplicates a paragraph but all comments are original content. So this would cause some concern I will have to let Brian know about this.

12 DiTesco February 3, 2011 at 3:55 pm

Hi Justin. I agree with you that this will most likely hurt (i hope so), auto blogs than anything else, considering the amount of junk they are syndicating on the web.

Good question about Brian’s website. Although I think that Google may not hurt them as they are a “reliable” website. The problem is that it falls within the “user generated content” category and I think that “a greater” control of possible spammers should be in place. Just to make sure. Thanks for stopping by.

13 Kimi@wordpress video tutorial February 9, 2011 at 10:35 am

Justine,

Will it really work?

I mean, i have reported so many autoblog websites which have adsense on it, and they do still have adsense until today.

I have reported the same blog for about 5 times maybe, and i just still see adsense on it..so i am not sure if it works..

I am an owner of autoblog myself, and i don’t dare to use my adsense account LOL..i prefer monetizing them with affiliate, since adsense account is hard to get, especially for those who lives in US or europe.

If i would live in India or Indonesia, it would be so easy to switch identity and another bank account.

Thanks for this reminder for all of us to DiTesco!

14 Justin Germino February 9, 2011 at 1:55 pm

Honestly I don’t know, I haven’t seen it work. I actually don’t care about auto blogs as long as it is only an excerpt and includes a link back to original post. It is the ones that steal entire content with no link back I don’t like, this is where a plugin like RSS Footer that you can brand your RSS Feeds comes in.

15 bbrian017 February 3, 2011 at 3:44 pm

First of all google is not referring to social networks they are referring to all the auto blogs that steal your content or my content. Like on this one blog I have preerp I have people that take my content and don’t even link back to me. They actually rank higher then me for a few of my articles.

Members that share in revenue at a social network will not be responsible. What they are saying is anyone that gains revenue from auto blogging will have to be held responsible. Either way I’m sure quality sites like mine “Blog Engage” will be fine. I won’t be stopping the revenue sharing until I’m banned.

16 DiTesco February 3, 2011 at 4:30 pm

Hi Brian. Like I said, I don’t think that your website will be affected by this as it is reliable and trustworthy. The “copycat” you are talking about is probably the one that will get hit because if I am not mistaken, they have gone as far as copying your design and more. Thanks for taking the time to leave your views.

17 bbrian017 February 3, 2011 at 6:15 pm

I hope your right because I would hate to once again have my business affected by Google.

18 DiTesco February 3, 2011 at 6:46 pm

Let’s hope so. I mean, I would want to believe that there is a “fine line” between “crap” and “good and legitimate” websites. Otherwise, it would be a mess and in my opinion equally harmful for Google as AdSense is still their major “source” of income.

19

Lee

February 3, 2011 at 5:55 pm

In your example about using guest bloggers you give the impression that Google does not either allow it or doesn’t allow unoriginal content (at least that was the impression I got although I don’t think you meant it that way). According to Google, however, republishing articles does not necessarily make you in violation of their policies

“AdSense publishers may not display Google ads on webpages with content protected by copyright law unless they have the necessary legal rights to display that content.”

The last part is the key: “unless they have the necessary legal rights to display that content.” I republish many articles on my sites, with the proper permission, and from what I have read, it is not a violation. But I also have original articles, as well as other information (i.e., I’m not “mirroring the other sites). Otherwise, major newspapers would be in violation (and many do run AdSense) by using their syndication services (AP, Reuters, UPI), which is really all republishing is. The same is with catalog sites who would be republish the same info about a product, as well as employment sites. Most of what they are referring to is better termed “mirror” sites, or scrapping, or sites that make use of PLR that don’t rewrite the articles, etc. Google states “duplicate content on a site is not grounds for action on that site unless it appears that the intent of the duplicate content is to be deceptive and manipulate search engine results.” See also: http://tinyurl.com/2b443m

20 DiTesco February 3, 2011 at 6:21 pm

Hi Lee. Thanks for providing an additional explanation on what seems to be “grounds” for violation under Google’s enhanced policy. And you are right, it is not my intention to say that Google prohibits guest posting, although I do not think that a guest post and republishing articles is the same thing. Anyway, republished content with the “proper” approval is of course not a violation (I think), although it is debatable as to what “proper approval” actually means. For example, republishing an article from article directories that provide you with “proper” republishing guidelines is OK (hopefully). Thanks for adding and filling in the gap.

21 Alex@Jocuri February 3, 2011 at 10:18 pm

Hi DiTesco,

Actually I think the real question is how to avoid being banned(although knowing what gets you banned can help you avoid it).
Google has taken a big step in stopping web spam and spam blogs that just rehash other people’s content that’s why they want to avoid funding their business.
Also, google want to do something about the content farms (aka ezine, article directories) because this kind of website are popping everywhere and the majority have low quality content that can’t even be read (mainly because of automated software that submits spinned articles).
So I think that as long as you don’t go black and keep your website free of stolen content, you’ll be okay.

As an offtopic factor, I think this will start a wave of adsense accounts terminations, which as we all know won’t have any explanation. I can’t wait to see what will happen.

22 DiTesco February 4, 2011 at 1:02 am

Agreed Alex, for as long as we stay “white”, we should be OK. On a side note, I’m somewhat inclined to agree wit you that there will be a “wave” of AdSense accounts being terminated. Normally when Google releases info like this is because they are on to something. We’ll see

23 Sire February 3, 2011 at 10:34 pm

I used to use those ad sharing revenue sites but I don’t anymore. I’ve found them to be a waste of time. Not only that, they’re making money off the backs of all the hard working members.

I think it’s good the Google is stepping things up. As a blogger you should be responsible for your content and that means your comments. Too many bloggers allow comments that do nothing at all for their blog without even checking where the links go to. This is their wake up call.

24 DiTesco February 4, 2011 at 1:00 am

Well said Sire, a wake up call indeed. Hopefully Mr G will enforce this policy as intended and put some sort of “control” of the several splogs out there.

25

Michele Welch

February 4, 2011 at 5:39 pm

Hi DiTesco,

First, I think you are interpreting the “warning” right on!

I don’t currently use Adsense myself, but I can understand the concern that Google has. Advertisers are paying lots of money to have their ads displayed, it’s only fair that their ads are being displayed on appropriate site where they have a fair chance of getting visitors and making their money back.

I don’t have anything against autoblogging, but I do think that people have to be responsible if they are going to use this method as a means of generating income. You wouldn’t set up a business in the “real” world and let it be and not peak in occasionally to see if it’s operating to the standards you expect it to, right?

Thanks for the heads up…in case I ever go the Adsense route. ;-)

Ciao!

26 DiTesco February 4, 2011 at 10:05 pm

Hi Michele. I think you are dead on about one aspect, and that is “auto bloggers” should be responsible to what they are doing. However, in my opinion, unless they “filter” adequately the articles they are “publishing” excerpts of, it will be very complicated to improve their quality at all. This means that some sort of “manual” intervention has to be done and that defeats the purpose of “auto blogging”. This is obviously different from user-generated-content, and I believe that this is where Google is focusing its efforts on.

Anyway, I really appreciate that you think I “interpreted” that warning right on. I needed that, lol. Have a great weekend.

27 Daniel Sharkov February 4, 2011 at 8:22 pm

Hey DiTesco,

You have really made a detailed overview on the subject. Although I have AdSense up and running from like five months, I honestly don’t remember ever checking their guidelines.

From the points you raised here, it seems like the real blogs (not auto blogs) shouldn’t have any problems. As long as you provide quality and original content, things should be fine.

You made a good point on the guest posts though. I actually had one guest post suggestion, which seemed pretty good. Don’t really know why, but I decided that it would be a good idea to check out if it isn’t duplicate or something. And voila – copying the first sentence and making a Google search with it showed exactly the same article on another blog. So yes – people must be careful when approving guest articles.

28 DiTesco February 4, 2011 at 9:59 pm

Hi Daniel. Thanks for your input and I really appreciate you sharing it with us here your recent experience about that guest post. I think that in a way, this proves the point that “it is always better safe, than sorry”. Thanks for stopping by and Yeah, I agree with you. This is a problem that real blogs that provide quality should be not concerned of.

29

Ted

February 5, 2011 at 2:25 pm

I think old publishers shouldn’t worry about being banned because Google loves old publishers with big earnings over the time. I’m a old Adsense Guy and one day I got a warning e-mail from Google, I wasn’t directly banned. I got three days to make some changes, I did them and my Adsense account is safe now.

30 DiTesco February 6, 2011 at 12:18 pm

Hi Ted. That’s true in part. Old publishers tend to be more credible in the eyes of Google, and keeping it that way is the right thing to do. Google does provide you first with a frinedly warning and gives you some days to solve the problem. They will only disable your account if you don’t do anything about it.

31 Windows 8 February 5, 2011 at 5:42 pm

Google should definitely follow these rules, I have seen many publishers still using adsense on autoblogs ( one person scrapping content from my site) still no action is taken

32 Ashvini February 5, 2011 at 11:45 pm

I think what google is doing is quite logical and makes a lot of business sense. I as a blogger would be horrified if someone is making money out of the content that I delivered and produced. Similarly advertisers would not put their money where they would land up at wrong places.
I once looked at autoblog software and said to myself, this is not the way I want to become successful.

33 DiTesco February 6, 2011 at 12:20 pm

Hi Ashvini. You are right. If you are looking to build your brand and increase credibility, auto blogging software will not get you there. On the contrary. Auto blogs are primarily made for only purpose, money.

34 lawmacs February 6, 2011 at 12:48 am

Autoblog what is that about i think nothing is wrong with google want to banned them why should start a blog populate it with other peoples content just to earn a few dollars from adsense. Look at the bright side google always have a strick adsense policy so this should not be a surprise. Thanks for the heads up.

35 DiTesco February 6, 2011 at 12:22 pm

Hi there. Yeah, this enforced policy is really great but can be very difficult for Google to act upon. I am sure they will do it and will very very cautious on how it will be done. This can cost them a lot of AdSense revenue and it will really be very interesting to see how it will develop. Thanks for stopping by.

36 Sherryl Perry February 7, 2011 at 4:52 pm

Hi DiTesco,
I for one am glad to see that Google is taking a stance and making people more accountable. A couple of months ago, one of my posts was scraped by a site that obviously makes all their revenue through AdSense ads. All of my efforts to resolve the copyright infringement (with the site owners) went unanswered. By simply filling out one form on Google AdSense, my post was pulled down from the site. This didn’t deter the site owners from continuing to plagiarize content but it does give us hope that Google will take steps to enforce copyright laws.

37

nazimwarriach

February 8, 2011 at 11:20 am

Hi DiTesco,
Thanks for interpreting Google Adsense’s New Policy which is more strict than previous one. I don’t want my Adsense account banned so I always tried to write content compliance with Google’s Policy. Any how I am going to remove AdSense account from one of my blog which may be against google’s policy.
Nazam Warriach

38

Tinh

February 9, 2011 at 5:14 am

My advice after 10+ years working with adsense is that you should not work with it if you have heart diseases :-)

39 DiTesco February 9, 2011 at 2:41 pm

LOL, Tinh. A very sound advice indeed :)

40

TJ McDowell

February 9, 2011 at 2:52 pm

Maybe Google is just trying to paint broad with a broad brush so they can’t say they didn’t warn people, but I honestly can’t imagine a large forum community where every comment is regulated. I would think that maybe issues with forum posts might cause Google to review the site and possibly bring issues to the forum administrator’s attention. Honestly, I’ve been less than impressed with some of the policies I’ve been seeing Google roll out recently. It’s almost like they’re starting to position themselves as internet police more than working hard to keep the position of innovators.

41 DiTesco February 9, 2011 at 7:34 pm

That final statement you made is probably close to being a “reality”, although they will always say that the program is theirs and therefore can enforce anything they see fit. In a way, it might sound somewhat “arrogant” although I suspect that there is a higher purpose for all this. Let’s see what the future will bring :) Thanks for stopping by

42

steven papas

February 9, 2011 at 7:21 pm

thanks a lot Franci for the very newsworthy and informational post. Adsense has turned very strict; one should pay extra attention its Terms of Use to avoid being banned. Keep up with your good work.

43 DiTesco February 10, 2011 at 12:39 pm

Thanks Steven. Google has been taking a strict stance lately on just about anything related to them and in my opinion this could be good, although we will see what sort of impact this will create. I am hearing already a lot of complaints from people, specially on the recent changes of the SERPs

44

Brad Harmon

February 10, 2011 at 12:31 am

The first thought that popped into my head was about BlogEngage, but I see you and Brian discussed that already in your comments.

I’m not very worried about comments, because I think most of us have some sort of spam blockers and keep up with what’s posted on our sites.

The one area I’m most concerned with is unoriginal guest posts. I’m seeing this become more and more of a problem. I don’t allow anyone to guest post that I haven’t developed some sort of relationship with first, but you never know what someone might do.

45 DiTesco February 10, 2011 at 12:45 pm

That’s true Brad. Ideally one should only accept guest post from someone that you have developed a relationship with. While this does not have that way, all the time. Running a quick “copyscape” check is good for all parties involved. Sometimes there are legit people who just don’t read the guest osting guidelines and they think it is OK to submit unoriginal articles :)

46

Toby Aletha

February 11, 2011 at 11:26 am

I haven’t worked with adsense, but thought about the fact to do it … until I try to find more information about it to fully understand … thanks for the warning … many, like me, often quickly scan policies and do not notice the important points.

47

Iroko@Bloggers Blog

February 11, 2011 at 3:50 pm

Google owns the advertising platform and I think they only helping to curb the menace that their adsense program has created…do hang your dream on adsense it might take you before you get to your goals, com’on wake build an online business!

48

Emily from Video Avatar

February 14, 2011 at 2:39 am

I’ve tried applying for Adsense before for my personal blog where I share the music I have in my hard disk and other things which I am interested in. They disabled my adsense after a month?

49 Glenn February 14, 2011 at 3:59 pm

To tell you the truth, we ready to announce that our blog is open for guest posting within the next few weeks. That we will still do. However, thanks to your post, I will be making sure to check if the posts they are giving us are original and, just to be on the safe side, make sure they are coming from reputable bloggers.

50

Jeff Pohl

February 15, 2011 at 2:05 pm

The thing that grinds me as a publisher and maybe even more as a searcher is seeing the duplicate content ahead of the original content when a search is done. If I am researching a topic, I would rather hit on the original author as there is typically more info there that is relevant to my query.
As a content author, I am not opposed to republishing as I actually like it. Typically I will write two different variations of an article. The first I put on my web site. The second I release to article directories. That way my site’s content is nearly total original content (unless I copy something with someone elses permission which is seldom).

51

Chelsea Thomas

April 7, 2011 at 2:11 pm

Thanks for this! I’m looking in to google adsense for my blog now, so this is a timely post for me. Thanks for the warning and a better understanding of what google adsense is about and what they’re on the look out for.

52 DiTesco April 7, 2011 at 3:02 pm

HI Chelsea. You are welcome. I wish you much success in your online endeavors and good luck with AdSense. It generates good revenue, but you have to be patient, determined and consistent iwth providing value for internet users.

53 tonyknuckles @ 113tidbits May 10, 2011 at 7:53 pm

Good luck indeed to everyone sitting on pins and needles. MFA and auto-blogging sites are horrific and I haven’t bothered to report any on my own.
I prefer to let google do their own bit of detective work.

As long as they keep me out of their sites..lol

54 DiTesco May 11, 2011 at 1:48 pm

Hi Tony. I hear you. Google is doing a pretty good job in hunting down this MFA and autoblog sites. I know for a fact about a friend of mine who just got wacked due to it..

55 Ray June 12, 2011 at 8:10 am

Google adsense is a decent paying program, but like anything that you can earn money with it will always be abused by those looking to make a quick or easy dollar. It can be difficult to keep track of everything someone posts to your site and whether it falls within the terms or not.

56 John June 15, 2011 at 1:09 pm

Yes ! it quite true if your site have copy content or spam click then your Adsense no more on your site, Even i also lost my adsense twice due to same reasons. Add fresh information in your site for every benefits.

57 Nonoy September 29, 2011 at 1:14 am

I just realize this. I didn’t know sites that copy contents on my blog are auto blogs; These sites should be banned by Google.

Moreover, I just wonder if Yousaytoo is safe. I deleted my Yousaytoo account, just to be sure. Thanks a lot for this post.

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