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  1. #1
    Believe knight01's Avatar
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    Adsense Migration Completed
    Jaime, I've completed my migration from GAN to Adsense for the payments. I have a question that has been nagging at me and hopefully you can answer it.

    In my example I own Easywidgets.com and I promote WidgetWorld from GAN that sells widgets. I've also had adsense on the site for several years alongside my reviews and widget news.

    One of my affiliate competitors QuickWidgets.com has been around almost as long as me and we've lived in a state of intense competitiveness. I come out with a new feature, they come out with a new feature.. it's a tough market and we both are major players in it.

    Other than trying to hack my server those cads at QuickWidgets.com really haven't been able to slow me down. But with the recent changes in GAN / Adsense policy regarding payments, I'm concerned that they can now use an ip proxy and go crazy clicking adsense ads on my site. These clicks will eventually get me banned from Adsense and effectively banned from GAN since I can't get payment for sales made through my affiliate links.

    My question is: what specifically is Google, Adsense and/or GAN doing to protect me from this possibility? I've never had an issue with any of the services, and I'm sure there is a failsafe that has been built in to this new system. I'd like to get reassurance that this will not / can not happen to me as an honest, TOS abiding affiliate/publisher.

    I know this is a hot button topic and many users will want to jump in to tell me to dump GAN, that is not the point of this post. Please do not derail the thread with those responses. I really only want to hear specifics from Jaime or someone in a position of authority within GAN/Adsense about what they are doing to protect their valued partner publishers from what could reasonably occur.
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  2. #2
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    I think, a better option will be to sign up for a 2nd adsense acct (if possible) and linking it to GAN. And never use this 2nd adsense acct except for using to get your GAN payments. If your competitors go click crazy and get your original acct banned, that won't affect GAN payments.

    I don't use adsense much though I have an acct.

  3. #3
    Beachy Bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sam_park
    I think, a better option will be to sign up for a 2nd adsense acct (if possible) and linking it to GAN. And never use this 2nd adsense acct except for using to get your GAN payments. If your competitors go click crazy and get your original acct banned, that won't affect GAN payments.

    I don't use adsense much though I have an acct.
    I believe that is against the AdSense TOS and, if discovered, would get both accounts banned.

    Knight01 asks a good question. I have been happy with AdSense since I joined nearly four years ago - and have never missed a monthly payment. I have, however, just started working with GAN and am hesitant about expanding with GAN merchants. There are a few merchants at GAN in whom I am very interested. I have not been able to find similar products elsewhere. My question is - is it "safe" to expand in those areas?
    Bill / Marketing Blog @ 12PM - Current project: Resurrecting my "baby" at South Baltimore..
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  4. #4
    Comfortably Numb John Powell's Avatar
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    My feeling is that your response will be that they do many things to combat click fraud but no specific information can be given. All will be information that's available on the Adsense site already. They can only say so much without helping the dark side.


  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill
    I believe that is against the AdSense TOS and, if discovered, would get both accounts banned.
    Ok, I didn't know about that and so said 'if possible'.
    I agree that affiliates who use adsense a lot, the concern raised here is a very legitimate one.

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador Caseyfern's Avatar
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    When my Adsense got smacked with a flurry of clicks, Google's approach to combating click fraud was to deactivate my Adsense account and refuse appeals. You may want to rethink the belief that a fail-safe exists on your behalf. That's what I thought, and I was swiftly and painfully proven wrong.

  7. #7
    Believe knight01's Avatar
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    While I appreciate all of the opinions and feelings. I truly prefer to get an answer directly from Jaime or someone directly related to GAN/Adsense. There's enough speculation, I see she is here posting so I hope she can take a moment to address my concerns.
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  8. #8
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    This is exactly the issue Google needs to worry about in combining AdSense and GAN. Publishers need to worry about AdSense violations beyond their control and now their GAN accounts are at stake because of it. That creates hesitancy/reluctance in promoting GAN or hesitancy/reluctance in promoting AdSense.

    knight01, I hope Google/AdSense/GAN is listening and has an answer for you.

  9. #9
    Google Affiliate Network Rep Google Affiliate Network Moderator's Avatar
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    Hello,

    Our specialists carefully monitor clicks and impressions on Google ads in order to protect your interests as well as those of our advertisers. To do this, we use both automated systems and human reviews, analyzing all ad clicks and impressions for any invalid click activity that may artificially drive up an advertiser's costs or a publisher's earnings.

    Google's proprietary technology analyzes clicks and impressions to determine whether they fit a pattern of use that may artificially drive up an advertiser's costs or a publisher's earnings. Our system uses sophisticated filters to distinguish between activity generated through normal use by users and activity that may pose a risk to our AdWords advertisers. Some examples of this activity include clicks or impressions generated by unethical users, automated robots and traffic sources, and publishers encouraging clicks on their ads. Our system enables us to filter out most invalid clicks and impressions, and our advertisers are not charged for this activity.

    In addition to our automated system, we have a team dedicated to detecting invalid activity using several specialized tools and a wide variety of techniques based on extensive experience tracking and monitoring user behavior and analyzing scenarios. We continually upgrade our detection mechanisms to proactively combat invalid activity.

    Thank you,

    Google Moderator

  10. #10
    Comfortably Numb John Powell's Avatar
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    All will be information that's available on the Adsense site already. They can only say so much without helping the dark side.
    Response is verbatim from here.


  11. #11
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    Don't think you'll ever get a real answer to that question because I don't think there is a way they can tell. You can just do a search on Adsense account banned and read. You'll see stories of somebody just starting out, they get their friends and family to click on their links and they get banned and in that case rightfully. They can get those same family and friends to do the same thing to a competitor and why wouldn't that account get banned as well? I can't think of any possible way to tell the difference.

    I used to prefer this network over CJ but on new blogs where there are merchants on both networks or on another network, I'm choosing the other ones now.

    Adsense should play no part whatsoever in someone's eligibility in GAN. It's just a bad business decision.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Google Affiliate Network Moderator
    ... activity that may pose a risk to our AdWords advertisers. Some examples of this activity include clicks or impressions generated by unethical users, automated robots and traffic sources, and publishers encouraging clicks on their ads.
    Well, that's pretty much what we already know and pretty much confirms the worst. Invalid clicks can be caused by "unethical users, automated robots and traffic sources". In other words, your competitors CAN get you kicked out of AdWords simply by clicking repeatedly on your ads, getting robots to click on your ads, promoting your site through pop-ups or bad traffic sources, etc.

    Google, there must be a better way! You're rewarding unethical business owners by enabling them to have their competition kicked out of AdSense and you're making it worse by also kicking them out of GAN.

  13. #13
    Believe knight01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Google Affiliate Network Moderator
    Hello,

    Our specialists carefully monitor clicks and impressions on Google ads in order to protect your interests as well as those of our advertisers. To do this, we use both automated systems and human reviews, analyzing all ad clicks and impressions for any invalid click activity that may artificially drive up an advertiser's costs or a publisher's earnings.
    Ok, good to know that a human will review clicks and it's not just some algo. I presume if the automated systems flag an account, the human will look at the stats prior to any action being taken?

    Quote Originally Posted by Google Affiliate Network Moderator
    Google's proprietary technology analyzes clicks and impressions to determine whether they fit a pattern of use that may artificially drive up an advertiser's costs or a publisher's earnings. Our system uses sophisticated filters to distinguish between activity generated through normal use by users and activity that may pose a risk to our AdWords advertisers.
    I don't know any honest publisher that has a problem with this. Advertisers are what makes Adsense and Google Affiliate Network work for publishers.

    Quote Originally Posted by Google Affiliate Network Moderator
    Some examples of this activity include clicks or impressions generated by unethical users, automated robots and traffic sources, and publishers encouraging clicks on their ads. Our system enables us to filter out most invalid clicks and impressions, and our advertisers are not charged for this activity.
    I think this is the crux of my concern. How will your automated systems or human reviewers be able to tell if I'm the one using the 'automated robots', "traffic sources' or if it is my arch nemesis, QuickWidgets.com, looking for a way to eliminate me the GAN program in which we both participate? They could simply buy a million visits from one of the companies that advertise with Google Adsense (so it's not hard to find these companies) for less than a penny a visit... that sounds familiar for some reason... and I am the one that gets investigated and likely banned.


    Quote Originally Posted by Google Affiliate Network Moderator
    In addition to our automated system, we have a team dedicated to detecting invalid activity using several specialized tools and a wide variety of techniques based on extensive experience tracking and monitoring user behavior and analyzing scenarios. We continually upgrade our detection mechanisms to proactively combat invalid activity.

    Thank you,

    Google Moderator
    Specialized tools. Without telling the bad players how it's done I presume this is a combination of reading cookies, ip addresses, ip address location and mac address information. Unfortunately, that is not fool-proof. An ip address is easily spoofed, cookies washed and as any slightly above average geek will tell you MAC addresses hidden or changed through the use of software that is widely available.

    There's an old saying... "locks are made to keep honest people, honest". There is no way to stop a bad player from playing badly. I return to my concern that if QuickWidgets.com decides to methodically click my adsense ads on my site or even on sites that do not have any Google Affiliate Network links, I will be banned by Adsense and indirectly through the lack of a payment method, GAN.

    This appears to mean that Google Affiliate Network is telling it's publishers to remove Adsense from not just their affiliate sites but any and all sites they may have. This must clearly be an example of the 'law of unintended consequences '. It appears I must chose between, Adsense which is used primarily on my content/informational sites and GAN which is used on promotional sites.

    As a representative of Google, do you have any specific suggestions on how to proceed?
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  14. #14
    ABW Ambassador Vrindavan's Avatar
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    is a big nightmare if happen, the reply did not mention a bit about clicks from people who try to void your adsense account.

  15. #15
    Google Affiliate Network Rep Google Affiliate Network Moderator's Avatar
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    Hello,

    I understand your concerns. All I can say is we continue to evaluate the situation and listen to your feedback.

    Thank you,

    Jamie

  16. #16
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    Google will never adequately answer this question in order to protect their technology. If the technology was so great though, then there wouldn't be anyone kicked out of AdSense and invalid clicks would simply be filtered out automatically.

    Google needs to stop "evaluating and listening" and to start doing something. The time to act is running out. At the very least, tell us that a solution is in the works that will somehow allow everyone to keep their GAN accounts regardless of past/future AdSense issues. If we continue to hear the same non-answers then the answer seems to be that Google will do nothing and we should all look elsewhere.

    There are plenty of GAN merchant alternatives:
    http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread.php?t=123502

    There are also plenty of AdSense alternatives:
    http://www.bing.com/search?q=adsense...tives&filt=all

  17. #17
    ABW Ambassador Vrindavan's Avatar
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    >> then there wouldn't be anyone kicked out of AdSense and invalid clicks would simply be filtered out automatically.


    to avoid wrong accuse honest webmasters doing wrongly, it is really better to filter out clicks or filter out leads in CPA models, instead of filter out affiliates.

    After the filtering, TRULY bad guys see the method does not work and they will stop doing it as well, even you don't kick them out.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vrindavan
    After the filtering, TRULY bad guys see the method does not work and they will stop doing it as well, even you don't kick them out.
    Truly bad guys will probably never stop trying to circumvent the system. I don't care if they get kicked out... they should be. The problem is the collateral damage of kicking out the good guys that didn't do anything wrong. When a user of your site, an increase in traffic, or an unscrupulous competitor can get you kicked out of AdSense, there's the problem.

    Black hat SEO sites get kicked out of the SERPS if they get caught, but seemingly all you need to do there is apologize, fix your site, and you're back in. Doesn't seem fair that admitted black hat SEO sites can stay in business with an apology but legitimate good business owners get kicked out of AdSense FOREVER for something they have no control over.

  19. #19
    ABW Ambassador Caseyfern's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Google Affiliate Network Moderator
    Hello,

    I understand your concerns. All I can say is we continue to evaluate the situation and listen to your feedback.

    Thank you,

    Jamie
    Jamie, not to get personal, but from what I've seen, I'm not sure Google does understand our concerns. While I appreciate your position as a Google employee, so far I have seen little from Google except for the brief and inscrutable nod to acknowledge that someone has seen some evidence of a pulse among the struggling publishers. Then the party line gets restated.

    If Google wants to listen to our feedback and be able to honestly state they hear what we have to say:
    Invite us to a teleconference.

    Extend the invitation to every merchant who is in the network, impacted or otherwise. They're paying to participate, too.

    Ensure that Google individuals in attendance are empowered to make decisions and concessions.

    Ensure Adsense management team members are present.

    Ensure that both sides of this table have advocacy, including disinterested third parties in tax, finance and contractual law.

    Moderate the conference only by exception.

    Be prepared to negotiate positions.


    OH, and make this a toll-free dial-in number; some of us can't afford day-time long distance rates, what with our commissions in danger of being cut by 90% at the end of October.

    It's time to drop the "because-I-said-so" mentality - we're not 8-year-olds - bring the parties to a common table, and deal with this issue in a professional manner.

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