Blogosphere rumors percolated earlier this month of Google’s eighty-sixing alleged news sites which were really ad farms.

Criteria for continued news source indexing were revealed as:

  • Offer information updated regularly
  • Organizational, not individual, management, with organizational information on site
  • No hate speech or pornography
  • No open content posting without editorial review
  • Website is technically conducive to inclusion

Well, now low-content sites of all kinds will drop off on June 1st, as late last week the Web giant sent termination notices to arbitraging Adsensers, as per CBR Online.

Friendly account disablement” messages went to Web sites who bought AdWords for low cost-per-click items, then redirected clickers to ad-heavy sites with AdSense ads for high-cost keywords. This ran afoul of the ban on “pages published specifically for the purpose of showing ads, whether or not the page content is relevant.” Arbitrage pages have advertising and little else, and might buy ‘watch’ in AdSense, then link to ads selling Rolexes (‘Rolex’ clicks being worth >2x what a ‘wrist watch’ click might cost).

The NY Post suggested keeping ‘click-through’ rates high was the heart of the matter. Google’s protective of their cred, as other actions this week confirm.

Will these Google-gamers move to Yahoo’s Publisher’s Network, or will Yahoo get weary of them as well? And, was arbitrage evil per se, or evil per Google? Join the discussion.


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