Tech and Culture

Google is starting to lose it

Everyone loves Google. The media loves to talk about Google’s “innovations” and the way they have revolutionized computing. I, frankly, never understood what the big deal was. Sure, Google changed the search business, but that’s the only innovation they had going for them, adsense/adwords notwithstanding. AdWords brings in a substantial portion of their revenues, if not the biggest. And even that is starting to lose its lustre thanks to greater pressures to generate more cash. Robert Cringely, of PBS fame, took a jab at the AdWords algorithm in his latest column.

An AdWords advertisement I can see why Google would let go of quality control in their AdWords service. After all, who cares about quality when it brings in the cash. If poor quality advertisements show up on my blog, it is my fault, not Google’s for having keywords in my content that link to pitiful ads.

The ad on the left was showing on my blog this morning, and since it seemed intriguing, I clicked on it. Now, before you say Click Fraud, let me tell you that you don’t get paid for clicking on your own Adsense ads since your IP address is tracked. The ad gave me the impression that I would somehow be able to download Windows Vista Beta 2 if I clicked on it, and so I did, only to pull my hair later. Why would Google do anything to instigate such a response? I thought one of their corporate philosophies was not being an evil company? What I saw on my browser was like an “adfarm”.

Google ads link to more ads!

Yes, someone was ingenius enough to pay for AdWords, and then have his keywords linked to a webpage with more ads (using a service called AdBrite) to generate net income for himself. As you can see, the webpage is pretty deceptive, and if you’re an unknowing scavenger looking to lay your hands on Windows Vista Beta 2, you would probably try clicking on 3-4 different links before you realized that it’s all a sham.

Where is Google’s quality control? Why am I being forced to carry these stupid advertisements on my blog? What should I do about it? I am thinking I should stop using AdSense altogether and switch to Yahoo! Publisher Network or something else. Quite simply, I am dismayed by this, and am starting to hate this company (Google) now.

I don’t know if I should react so strongly just because some company that pays me with half a peanut for every click on the ads it places on my blog tried to tarnish my content with its repulsive, unmoderated ads. Maybe I am overacting. I wonder how many people have had an experience like this.

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