Letter: The Untold Google Story
On one side are the advertisers (AdWords), and on the other are Webmasters (AdSense). Now that Google is being sued, honest folks like myself are being canceled for click fraud. Not so coincidentally, Google canceled my account on the last day when my account reached the payment threshold of $100, which is required for anyone to receive a check. Google sent a form letter saying my account was canceled for click fraud. When I inquired further, I was told that I had no recourse and that their entire AdSense department was on vacation. I was given the e-mail address of their legal department, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Google did not give me an opportunity to correct the problem. Since the clicking of ads is tracked solely by Google based on a Web surfer's Internet protocol address, any surfer (or competitor) can click multiple times on an ad. This action alone would put any Google AdSense participant in danger of having their account closed.
Since only Google can track who is clicking their ads, it is Google's responsibility to inform program participants that a problem exists. By informing a Webmaster of a problem, this would give Webmasters like myself a chance to block specific IP addresses. It's a very simple solution, yet Google instead chose to close my account and others like me without providing any of us the chance to correct the problem. Google hides behind the clause, "Google does reserve the right to terminate an account for any reason, including invalid click activity from any source."
I became a number that looks good in court. I can see it now. The Google lawyer will stand before the judge: "Your honor, we are fixing the problem. Here are the people we got rid of." The problem with this solution is I, and others like me, did nothing wrong. I did not click ads on my own sites. I have spoken with people from the nonprofit that I am the Webmaster for. The clients I spoke with clicked ads and have actually signed up for things from the Google advertisements.
Google is guilty of making the little guy (small businessperson) the scapegoat and refusing payment without providing proof or a reasonable explanation.
Christine A. Lindorfer