AdSense Bush Telegraph Sending Out Wrong Signals

If you've heard the rumour that AdSense now allow their ads to be displayed on the same pages as the ads of competing contextual advertisers then you heard wrong.

Eagle-eyed spotters on the Digital Point webmaster forum spotted that the rule prohibiting AdSense ads alongside other contextual ads has been removed from the program policy page in the update. This is true - it has gone. However, the same spotters failed to realise that this rule is still included in the Google AdSense Online Standard Terms and Conditions. Consequently there is a potentially damaging INCORRECT rumour circulating that the rules have been changed when in fact they haven't. Paragraph 2 of Standard Terms and Conditions includes the following statement:

"General. You agree not to display on the same Web page in connection with which any Ad Unit, Ad, Link, Search Box, or Referral Button is displayed (a "Serviced Page") any advertisement(s) that an end user of Your Site(s) would reasonably confuse with a Google advertisement or otherwise associate with Google. If You have elected to receive content or Site-based Ads, You further agree not to display on any Serviced Page any non-Google content-targeted advertisement(s). If You have elected to receive Search Results on any Site(s), You agree that Google will be the exclusive provider of Internet search services on such Site(s). Certain Google services available as part of the Program may contain filtering capability, such as SafeSearch or AdSafe, that You may access through Your account. However, if You elect to enable any such filters, You acknowledge and agree that: (i) it is Your responsibility to enable such features in accordance with the specifications provided by Google, and (ii) Google does not and cannot commit that all results (including Ads, Links and Search Results) will be limited to results elected by enabling such filter(s). Google may also include in certain services features which are unsupported under Google's then current technical documentation. Such features are provided "as is" and Your use of them shall be undertaken solely at Your own risk."

The red highlighting is mine, but as you can clearly see AdSense is still incompatible with other contextual advertising services.

Reading around there is an indication that Google intend to remove this clause from the Standard Terms and Conditions, but until that happens I urge you not to run AdSense competitive ads. AdSense is notoriously fussy that their official written rules are complied with.


LFC fan! said...

thank you for the comment.

Mike Perry said...

Great that you spotted this. Too many bloggers seem to take for granted what is written on other blogs without checking out the info for themselves.

Mark said...

Interesting...I don't want to sound dumb but would a non-advertising search box like technorati search box be against the adsense tos? I seriously doubt it but that is kinda what I read into search. I know dumb question.


Tom said...

Non-advertising search boxes are absolutely fine - the only problem arises when you run competing contextual ads (eg. change according to page content) alongside AdSense.

Mari said...

Thank you for the info. I am one of the dummies who just took for granted the dummy who told me it was okay was right! Now I'll take down those adbright ads I just put up!
Any thoughts on adbright vs. adsense? Obviously, you use adsense, but is there a particular reason you don't use adsense? I was going to compare the two on my blog, but now I guess I can't!!

Tom said...

Thanks for your comment Mari. There's 2 main reasons I don't use AdSense on here - firstly, with a name like adsense4dummies, it conflicts with the content of the site; secondly, the advertiser I use doesn't have so many stupid rules and try to dictate how I arrange my pages.

AdBrite is FINE - it is not contextual so isn't in direct competition with AdSense. Leave them up if they're earning you money.

rob stgeorge said...

Hey Tom, my blog found itself a page ranking overnight by the looks of it, have you heard anything on the bush telegraph?

Kim Friend said...

Just some new info for you. The Bush Telegraph is a South African company specialising in promotional items
site will be up and running in a couple of days

Tom said...

Yes, thanks for that Kim. You taking the piss?