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Google Quietly Closes AdSense API to Small Sites 56

NewsCloud writes "Google has raised the required minimum traffic limit for publishers who wish to use its AdSense API to 100,000 page views per day. The AdSense API was introduced in March as a way for sites with user generated content to share advertising revenue with their members. Says Google, "This policy change will probably result in fewer developers going live and give us a chance to enhance our support resources and processes to more easily support a greater number of developers in the future...we hope to be able to lower it in the future as we become more efficient at supporting our developers!" Meanwhile, some publishers report waiting a month for their API usage to be approved. I take Google at its word for now but worry that small developers could be increasingly squeezed out of the mashup space if this were to become a trend."
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Google Quietly Closes AdSense API to Small Sites

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  • Competition (Score:5, Interesting)

    by biocute ( 936687 ) on Friday September 14, 2007 @11:43PM (#20612771) Homepage
    Is there any competition to capture this <100K market?

    Anyway, site developers can still share profits with contributing users, it's just less transparent and more tedious to work out the portions.
    • Re:Competition (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Captain Splendid ( 673276 ) <> on Saturday September 15, 2007 @12:52AM (#20613131) Homepage Journal
      Yeah, this is a non-story. As far as I can see, it just means the accounting burden shifts to the customer, right?
      • by xnickmx ( 628586 )
        non-story? Uh not quite. Google does a tremendous amount for the site owner: tracks the clicks (not all clicks pay out at the same rate, site owner doesn't know how much each click is worth) Google sends out the checks (prints them out, mails them and I believe takes care of W2s or 1040s) Google is trusted broker. It's a big issue to get customers to trust some small site to pay them the correct amount.
    • by kc-guy ( 1108521 )
      I worked for [] a while back. The sell PPC advertising on junk search engines. Not quite the same thing, and much lower click-through than Google or Overture...but a possible alternative to the newly alienated market.
  • by Vlaadimir ( 1146843 ) on Saturday September 15, 2007 @12:00AM (#20612873)
    This just shows that the AdSense network is not robust enough to handle the amount of users that wanted to participate. By limiting the program to users that have high volume, they maximize profit. This allows that devision of Google to fund R&D on how to improve the network to include more participants. This just appears to be an issues of cost.
    • Re: (Score:1, Troll)

      by bky1701 ( 979071 )
      But they can turn right around and blow a few million on a landing strip for their personal jets []. Yeah Google is really short on cash.
      • by king-manic ( 409855 ) on Saturday September 15, 2007 @02:46AM (#20613823)
        But they can turn right around and blow a few million on a landing strip for their personal jets. Yeah Google is really short on cash.

        You are aware that wasn't "Google" funded. It was the personal funds of the founders. The jets as well. Or should all CEO's limit themselves from spending their personal bank roll?
    • by muridae ( 966931 )

      This just shows that the AdSense network is not robust enough to handle

      No, it doesn't. It shows that Google doesn't want to spend money supporting the API for use by small companies. AdSense is still available to small web pages.

    • by cheater512 ( 783349 ) <> on Saturday September 15, 2007 @02:01AM (#20613561) Homepage
      Its not Adsense. Its a special form of adsense which would probably only be useful for larger sites anyway.

      Basically its revenue sharing where you can share a % of your profit with your users.
      Thats all they have limited.
    • How much of AdSense Ads are Scam?

      I'm not talking of the kind of scam that you pay but don't receive. Put those products that promise solutions they don't or only partially provide.

      Or silly, poorly made products, where most of investment in the product is buying adwords.

      Look the ads Google put on your site. Would they be approved by your advertisement editorial team? Do they make your site less credible? Do they lower the value of your ad space?

      Google technology so far is much more focused on being popular,
      • by Sparr0 ( 451780 )
        Adsense ads on my site are usually quite relevant and legitimate. I have a blog with some tech stuff, some personal stuff, and a large photo gallery from sci-fi and anime conventions. The tech stuff tends to get mediocre-and-higher store links, and the photo gallery (when its properly tagged) usually gets ads for costume stores and comic dealers.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 15, 2007 @12:13AM (#20612945)
    Stories submitted by user NewsCloud:
      Spotlight on Facebook Groups Affects Microsoft []
      Facebook Exposes Advertisers To Hate Speech []
      Facebook Apps Facing Delays and Uncertainties []

    idealog = personal spamblog, newscloud = spam blog, whom Google undoubtedly denied AdSense API access

    • I quite honestly fail to see what makes any of these stories invalid, except possibly the one about the hate-speech groups. Care to elaborate? I personally think three out of those four are very interesting, newsworthy stories.
    • Google does in various ways, too. I run a couple adword campaigns for fun (bids all under 5 cents) and the only place where my ads show up as I far as I can tell are weird site like this: []

      Ok, not blogspam, but a linkfarm. But wouldn't be surprised if Google run a few hundred thousand spam blogs, too. (After all, they do own Blogger which, as much as I like it, is from a certain perspective little more than an extensive backwater of blogspam.)

      In response to an email I sent them, a Google rep acknowledged these are Google sites. Fine, they provide an advertising space for cheapskates like me who wish to pay 2 cents a click. But I found it interesting that they don't identify these as Google-run sites, or even put the usual 'Ads by Google' tag with the ad blocks. And as their response shows, they don't make it exactly easy to disassociate yourself from this stuff if you're running a budget campaign:

      Thank you for your email. I apologize for the delay in responding to your email. Please note that the site is not necessarily a link farm. This website is a part of our AdSense for domains program. AdSense for domains allows domain name registrars and large domain name holders to display AdWords ads on their websites. AdSense for domains delivers targeted, conceptually related advertisements to parked domain pages by using Google's semantic technology to analyze and understand the meaning of the domain names. Note that ads shown on an an AdSense for domain site need not display the 'ads by Google' label. Ads on such sites only display the 'Sponsored links' label.

      Please be assured that parked domain sites are included in the Google Network because of the value they add to both users and advertisers. Our internal data show that parked domain sites typically convert at rates equal to that of search and content pages.

      We do realize that advertisers may not want their ads to show on such sites. Please note that turning off the Content Network will cause your ad to stop showing on all the sites on the Content Network including AdSense for domains.

      Not sure if the API gives you any finer control over where your ads appear, but if it did, one effect of removing it from small advertisers might be consigning their ads to more wastelands like this.
    • Why just complain about my Facebook posts? You don't seem to have a problem with: Looking Into Mozilla's Financial Success [], Gates Foundation Revokes Pledge to Review Portfolio [] and Moglen on Social Justice and OSS []. It's not like the NewsCloud logo is all stealth on my blog :)
  • Personally, I'm kind of tired of seeing those ads everywhere I go :) Maybe it'll cut down some load time for the remaining ones as they save some bandwidth as well.
  • I take Google at its word for now but worry that small developers could be increasingly squeezed out of the mashup space if this were to become a trend.

    That sentence is like some sort of a highly refined concentrate of dumb. The Google trusting isn't really that bad (although I don't think they deserve it) but "squeezed out of the mashup space" ?? Remember, web 2.0 is only... []

    • by jez9999 ( 618189 )
      Everyone knows that mashed potato, when squeezed, moves *out* of a sieve. It's really quite simple.
  • 100,000 pageviews (Score:4, Interesting)

    by MarkRose ( 820682 ) on Saturday September 15, 2007 @01:11AM (#20613233) Homepage
    100,000 pageviews a day may seem small in comparison to some sites on the web, but that actually limits the number of sites to only a few thousand. I run a site that gets roughly 50,000 pageviews a day, and also ranks in the top 50,000 sites on If pageviews across sites are skewed exponentially towards the busiest sites, that means that roughly 10,000 or less sites are eligible to participate. Interesting.
    • , and also ranks in the top 50,000 sites on is a website that aggregates data from their spy ware tool. So it heavily skews their information to the technically incompetent/ windows pc users. Thus slashdot is severely under represented as are many geek sites such as ars technica and so on. Are you aware of any more accurate tools? sometimes I'd like to know data for these sites.
      • Especially IE/Win users. Unfortunately, I know of no other similar tools.
        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by Frozen Void ( 831218 )
          People who watch their privacy and block counters,don't install toolbars are making an intelligent choice, but they remove themself from statistics.It has some disadvantages on the
          scale of entire internet.
          See, people base popularity on the statistics,
          and having these statistics requires to users to give up some of the privacy.Examples:
          How many Linux users are there?>>
          Does our company needs to develop for them?
          Is this site really popular? >>Whats its pageviews in alexa?
          My statistics webcounter sh
          • by foobsr ( 693224 ) *
            Surveys, Polls and other methods which require participation aren't reliable enough for most people (as the results can be skewed by interested parties).

            1) How is installing a piece of software not participation and how is — contrary to your argument — a skew avoided?
            2) Surveys, Polls and other methods (given proper sampling/sample size) are skewed on principle because only specific subpopulations agree to participate (not, e.g., because Coke has a vested interest in not knowing how many pe
      • is a website that aggregates data from their spy ware tool. So it heavily skews their information to the technically incompetent/ windows pc users.

        That effect is offset by technically oriented website owners who are interested in how their site is doing compared to the competition, and technically oriented people who are more interested in statistics anyway. My own website has a part that attracts mostly nontechnical people (85/11% IE vs FF browsers) and a part aimed at technical people (48/41% I

    • Your Alexa-rating is bullshit. Elfpack [] has Alexa's bullshit traffic rating 124,533 while it has over 40 000 page views per day. And while more than 90% of the users are from the English speaking world, Alexa says most of the viewers comes from a few Arabic countries.
  • by DreamerFi ( 78710 ) <(john) (at) (> on Saturday September 15, 2007 @02:34AM (#20613767) Homepage
    Every single smaller advertiser I know that has attempted to get some money through advertising for google had their account yanked a few weeks before it reached the point where google actually had to pay something. Every single one. And always without any way to challenge the yanking, as in "we detected click-fraud and YOU have to prove we're wrong, but we won't show you anything that may help you".

    Guess who's permanently in my adblock filter?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by emurphy42 ( 631808 )
      As I understand it, anyone worried about that could force an early pay-out by closing their account (and then opening a new one if they decide it's worth continuing after all).
    • I've never had any problem with ad revenue and payments. Just my experience...
    • I've held a google adsense cheque in my hands. So it's not impossible. Now get out there and Live The Dream! ;-)

      (And, seriously, adblock *your own* google ads on *your own* site, it just makes sense. I tend to block all of them, everywhere, even my own site, though. :))
    • by xnickmx ( 628586 )
      I've never had any problem with AdSense paying out on a site that I help with. It typically get 3000-5000 hits a day and the Google checks arrive regularly.
  • I hate those stupid autogenerated search sites that do nothing more than come up with ads for your keywords, they get put up all over the place. I hope this kills them.
  • They wouldn't have qualified. And my id is not that low.

    It seems that Google wants the startups to go with someone, or rather, something else - which is not a bad idea until you consider the fact this practice will eventually cut Google out of a large portion of the market. Why would a well-established website, with its own marketing staff, cater to Google? Once you've hired marketing staff (as opposed to just using Google), there's going to be a resistance to change. Sure, you can fire them, but I'

  • One of the features of Apple's new iWeb release is AdSense: []

    But, this program is surely targeted toward the average person's boring blog, not something that would generate significant traffic. So, is the feature just broken for them now?

I have the simplest tastes. I am always satisfied with the best. -- Oscar Wilde