Google Owns Your Ass Data

Google Owns Your Ass Data

I’ve finished my run at getting Google to turn my AdSense account back on. They “detected” some suspicious activity 2.5 years ago while I was in Mexico. Yes, I said, I clicked on my own ads a few times, I was in Mexico, I’d never had AdSense turned on. I didn’t know about the Publisher’s Extension that allows you to click on your own ads without breaking the law. The Google Law.

I’m done with them. After 6 appeals, where I gave them all of my click data from Google Analytics, and I gave them my own capture of the analytics from the mysterious period on Dec. 24, when I had a surge in click activity to my site overall. But it was a hit post, not fraud.

The same letter, all six times. We’ve thoroughly reviewed your account and determined you are still fkd. And we’re not going to tell you why we think you’re a fraudster, because that would reveal too much about the fkin magic that is our business.

It was odd, when I asked a Director I know at Google to ask about my site. He said, “Those AdSense people don’t respond to me either. I tried. They tell me to take a hike too.”

So the King Google has killed my ideas and hopes and activities related to building an audience and some clickstream income. Well, to be honest, it wasn’t going to be much money. Even with my biggest month ever, 100,000 reads in August 2015, I probably stood to make about $15. Woo hoo. So what’s the big deal? Why do I care so much?

I hate to say this, because when I hear it coming from someone else, it makes me roll my eyes, but… It was the principle of the thing. I did nothing wrong. I admitted not understanding the system. And Google had about $12 at risk, total. And I gave them all the data I had, all data they already had, since my tracking and analytics were all empowered by Google. And nothing. And nothing again. And even 2.5 years later, with some history between us, longevity, honesty, and nothing. We’ve reviewed your account and cannot reinstate your participation at this time. (Or ever, they should’ve said.)

That’s one more reason I use AD Block. And why even though I love G-Mail, I’m blocking ads there as well. The biggest change I’ve made recently is shifting my primary search engine from Google to Duck Duck Go. The coolest part is DDG does not track your searches or keep cookies on your activities. (Though I even use cookie eaters with DDG.) And the results are much cleaner and simpler.

Here’s my DDG results page on “Google AdSense.”

uber-ddg-screen

The results are a lot cleaner, with no ads. And they are not filtered by my previous searches or data from some demographic marketing database.

Yes, Google still owns my email system, my voice mail system, my “docs,” hangouts, analytics, and calendar, but hey… I can take a few things back. Occasionally I have to actually pull up Google.com if I don’t get enough results from DDG. But that happens once a week.

Give it a try. The switch is simple, and even if you don’t use AD Block or Privacy Badger, you’re going to have a better search experience. It will actually be search results and not 55% ADS – 45% RESULTS like Google.

It’s time we pull some of our data back from the Alphabet big beast. Their slogan, do no evil, doesn’t really seem to be holding up under the globalization and shareholder pressures.

John McElhenney
@jmacofearth (also seen on Google+: jmacofearth)

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