A few days ago, bizarre ads filled my screen. Many of them aimed at women: Maxipads for instance. They appeared on Youtube & in MY private google account. Even on Spotify I received ads for Christian books and mascara. At first, I was amused. But the offbeat ads have become downright annoying. So, I delved into my Google Ad settings.
I was shocked to discover that Google pegged me as a 17 year old girl!
And it’s not just Google. I’ve had issues with Amazon as well. For instance when my WIFE was logged into Amazon. MY wishlist appeared on her suggested buys–when she clicked on the “Your Wishlist” link, MY wishlist appeared. What’s even worse was Amazon’s sending HER purchase suggestions to MY google e-mail. I received direct e-mails from Amazon suggesting that I buy things from HER private wishlist for myself. Somehow Amazon’s cookies crossed our wish lists. Our names are different. Amazon has no way of knowing that we’re married. It’s disturbing because her personal preferences were sent to me without her consent. And mine were sent to her without my consent. The privacy hole is huge and frightening. We contacted Amazon and they have fixed the issue.
I’m sure that I am not alone. Anyone who shares a computer with someone else has probably endured similar glitches. Here’s how I was able to “Opt Out” of Google advertising.
Log in to your account. Just below the gear/configure icon, click the link that says, “Why this Ad?“
A balloon will appear it will say:
This ad was based on the email you were viewing. Ads Settings puts you in control of the ads you see.
I know that this is NOT a barefoot running related post. But it affects the barefootrunnerlife.com blog.
Unfortunately, Google Adsense has decided to blacklist my account, which means I am banned from including Google Advertisement on this site or on any site I develop in the future. Adsense has NOT given me a reason for banishing my account. I found out when I tried to log-in and was greeted with DENIED access because of “unauthorized” activity. Google rejected my requests for an explanation. I made an appeal, but my appeal was refused; again without any explanation.
I did some research and discovered that other site owners have been victims as well. They suggest that an error in the Adsense Click-fraud algorithm is to blame. If people who visit your site click on ads and don’t buy or stay on the ad page very long, Google flags the click as fake. Apparently there are also software bots that can be sent to a site and which imitate clicks on the ads. This is outrageous!!! First of all, isn’t the whole point of the ads to get clicks? Second of all how is a Website owner supposed to control how his or her visitors use the site? It also makes it child’s play for crazies, criminals, and hackers to revoke other people’s adSense accounts. All they have to do is visit your site and randomly click on ads or send a bot your way. It’s a death-blow because it will get your site banned from Adsense forever!
Worst of all, Google doesn’t offer any warnings. So, if hackers or misguided users target your site, you’re done. Even if you had a chance to see that activity, there’s nothing you can do. You’re at the mercy of the Google tyrants.
Before Google kicked me to the curb, I was happy to use their search, maps, ads, and other products. In fact, I even made a video tutorial about how to plot a running route with Google Maps. Only now do I realize how crooked Google really is. Google had brain-washed me to promote their products for free.
The more I learn about Google, the less I want them taking pictures of my backyard, reading my e-mail, and eavesdropping on my phone calls. Although this Goliath offers convenience, the price is far too high. He can stomp on whom ever he wants.