on Oct 26, 2007
I notice my Google ads have gone nuts lately. Time to clean house again.
Since the ending of DMotR, this site has been pretty tightly dedicated to a couple of core subjects, so Google should have no problem figuring out what ads should be running here. But instead of better targeting, I’m getting ads for all kinds of stupid stuff. One of them is for some sort of “enviro-friendly waterless toilet. (Enviro-friendly? Is human waste no longer biodegradeable?) Whatever. It may or may not be something my readers might want, but Google seriously needs a checkbox labeled “NEVER EVER ADVERTISE PINK TOILETS ON MY SITE, EVEN IF IT’S A CHOICE BETWEEN THAT AND FURRY PORN.” Selling toilets on my website? Not in this lifetime.
That ad has been nixed, which means it should stop showing up in the next 24 hours or so. I’ve also killed some unwanted stuff for ringtones and that sort of thing. Still, I’d like to ask for your help in tracking down crap ads. Here are the sorts of ads I want to kill:
- Ads that are NSFW. Pretty girls are ok. Pretty girls in bikinis are not ok. Pretty girls with nothing on but some text or bits of cloth covering their naughty bits are right out. This is a geek site, not Maxim.
- Crap ads. I have no interest in mortgages, “Win a free “XBox 360”, ringtones, and other trashy, cheap, scam-like junk. I resent ads from these people (since they often ALSO send spam) but they make it worse on themselves by making their ads blindingly ugly. Jerx.
- Political ads. I keep my politics to myself on this site, so I’m not about to give the next batch of tyrants and cannibals a place to sell themselves here. Presidential ads in particular are very unwelcome.
If you see one of the above appear, please drop the domain name of the site in the comments, here or in any other post. If you tell me “I see an ad for free ringtones” that doesn’t help me, because I don’t know where it goes so I have no way of blocking it. If you tell me, “I see an ad for ringtonespammers.com” then I can block the ad. Note that the URL should be listed underneath, so you shouldn’t have to click on the offending ad.
Also: I see on other sites they have great ads for videogames and nothing else. I’d hate to give up on my existing ads, which include RPG dice and other cool stuff, but if Google is going to continue behaving like this then I’m going to look elsewhere. An ad for videogames or dice enhances my site. An ad for toilets detracts from the value of the site in ways I can’t begin to calculate. This ain’t no Home Depot.
But where do you go to run those videogame ads? I Googled around for an hour (er… maybe “Googling” was a bad idea in this case) and couldn’t find anything except services that wanted to provide advertising FOR me. Maybe those ads are only available for “large” sites and they don’t want to deal with hobby blogs. Still, if anyone knows about who provides those ads and where I can go to check it out, please drop a link in the comments.
(Also: If you are using some sort of ad-blocking and never see the ads, you really don’t need to brag about it. It’s a free net and I don’t object at all to surfing on your own terms. But, I pay for bandwidth with this ad revenue, so this isn’t a case where I’m going to give you a high five for your efforts. I’m not going to join you in cheering, “YEAH! Stick it to The Man!” in cases where The Man is me.)
EDIT: The ads at Kotaku are what I’m looking for. Videogames and technology stuff. I wouldn’t use that many (and I don’t need to, since I’m a lot smaller than Kotaku) but one ad that is reliably relevant and technology / videogame focused would be perfect.
Shamus Young is an old-school OpenGL programmer, author, and composer. He runs this site and if anything is broken you should probably blame him.