Google Updates AdSense TOS

Google has updated their AdSense TOS with some new changes designed to ensure Google has no competition from rival networks that look like Google ads. JenSense has the full scoop.

Competitive Ads and Services In order to prevent user confusion, we do not permit Google ads or search boxes to be published on websites that also contain other ads or services formatted to use the same layout and colors as the Google ads or search boxes on that site. Although you may sell ads directly on your site, it is your responsibility to ensure these ads cannot be confused with Google ads.

What does this mean?

What does this mean for publishers? If you are running YPN and AdSense on a 50/50 ad rotation using the same or very similar color palettes, you would now be in violation of AdSense policies. Likewise, if you are running AdSense on one part of your site, and YPN on another part, you would now also be in violation of the policies if you are using the same or similar color palettes.

However, this also affects ad units that mimic AdSense, yet are not contextual based, something that was always well within the AdSense terms and policies before now. So if you are selling text ads or running affiliate links in ad units that mimic AdSense, you will be in violation of the terms.

It looks like Google is making it harder for publishers to run both AdSense and YPN on the same site. They are forcing you to change the color of the YPN ads so they don’t look like Google ads. If you wish to continue using both, not only must the YPN ads never appear on a page with a Google ad, but the YPN ad’s color scheme must be completely different – I guess you can have blended Google ads and YPN ads that stand out like a sore thumb! Who is going to do that?

I don’t run YPN on any of my sites (because YPN is US only at the moment) but this new policy can mean a lot of work for webmasters who are running both – making site wide change is never a simple task.