[Inside AdSense] Clarifying our ad implementation policies

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Inside AdSense Team

Jun 10, 2011, 2:55:44 PM6/10/11
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We’ve recently made some changes to the language of our program policies. We highly encourage publishers who have signed the AdSense online Terms and Conditions to check the AdSense program policies often, and we'd like to take a moment to clarify our ad implementation policies and mention a few updates that have been made.

Publishers are encouraged to experiment with a variety of placements and ad formats to enhance the user experience and thereby maximize their earnings. However, altering the behavior, targeting, or appearance of AdSense ads without explicit approval from Google is generally prohibited. This behavior includes but is not limited to placing ad code in iframes in such a way that manipulates the standard behavior, targeting or delivery of ads. An iframe is an HTML tag used in web design that allows a webpage, picture, or graphic to be displayed in a frame within another page. Our policies have always disallowed the misuse of iframes, and recently we clarified our language to explicitly prohibit the misuse of iframes in our program policies.

Improperly iframed ads are a disservice to our advertisers since the ad itself can be obscured. Not only are they not viewable, these implementations can lead to accidental clicks if these hidden ads are placed in a location that users frequently click. Please see below for an example of a partially hidden banner.

Hidden iframed ads is one form of misuse. The other is cross-domain iframing abuse. Cross-domain iframes are used to frame content from a different site. This type of implementation can allow other sites to frame ads that belong to another site without the publisher’s knowledge.

As a result, we’ve modified our Ad Behavior policy to the following:
AdSense code may not be altered, nor may the standard behavior, targeting or delivery of ads be manipulated in any way that is not explicitly permitted by Google. This includes but is not limited to the following: clicking Google ads may not result in a new browser window being launched, nor may Google ads be placed in an IFRAME.

We’re aware of certain ad implementations that require the valid use of iframes. As per our program policies, exceptions to our policies are permitted only with authorization from Google.

With our updated language, our goal is to be more proactive about enforcing the misuse of iframes. Iframing is not only deceptive when improperly implemented, but it often leads to unintended behavioral outcomes that result in policy violations, such as the double-serving of ads. As our program policies also note, we reserve the right to disable ad serving to sites and/or accounts that fail to comply with these policies without permission from Google. To best adhere to our policies and experience better targeting results, we recommend pasting our ad code directly into the source of your web page HTML.

We hope you found this clarification to our program policies useful. If you have any questions regarding iframe policies or program policies in general, feel free to contact us. To help ensure the good standing of your account, we encourage you to check your content and implementations on a regular basis. You can also stay informed about policy updates by revisiting our Help Center, our Help Forum, and subscribing to this blog for updated posts, tips, and upcoming AdSense events. If you find sites within our network that are clearly violating these guidelines, we encourage you to report them to us.

Posted by Cecelia Choi - AdSense Policy team

Posted By Inside AdSense Team to Inside AdSense at 6/10/2011 11:55:00 AM
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