Author Topic: Google  (Read 19262 times)

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Google
« on: February 26, 2005, 06:31:37 pm »
Apologies to anyone who has been trying to use the Google search (at the foot of each page) in order to find information on this site. An error in the coding has been preventing the display of all the relevant references on the site. If you have been searching and have been unsuccessful, please try again. It should work now.

:)
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Re: Google
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2006, 07:15:19 am »
I am going to try to introduce the Google AdSense programme across the site. The aim is to try to raise funds to pay for the hosting costs of the site now that the traffic has grown and to cover the cost of the Webcam and the connection. I have no idea how much it will raise, but I will keep everyone posted via this thread. The site might have a few blips over the next 24 hours because I will probably make loads of mistakes as I try to figure it out and the pages might look a little different at times - don't worry, I have created a full back up.

 :)

David
« Last Edit: January 21, 2006, 09:39:59 am by David Brewer »
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Offline sasquartch

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Re: Google
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2006, 09:18:47 am »
Has any consideration been given to soliciting voluntary contributions, say using PayPal.

I would hope in an affluent area like BP people might like to help support a resource such as this.

Can you give any idea of how much money you are hoping to raise per month ?


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« Last Edit: January 21, 2006, 09:41:15 am by David Brewer »
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2006, 10:21:28 am »
Hi Paul,

Let's see how this goes with AdSense. The beauty of it is that there is no admin. They just count the traffic and send a cheque each month. It could be peanuts, but if it is enough to pay Positive Internet for their hosting (they have given it free for eight years) that would be nice.

This system also allows for local firms to have their ads come up on the site. If you look at the new banner ad at the bottom of the front page, there is a link to 'Advertise on this site' at the bottom left of the ad banner. Local business can sort that out by contacting Google - all the admin is done by them.

I will post about the sort of income this generates when any figures come in.

David


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« Last Edit: January 21, 2006, 09:41:37 am by David Brewer »
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Offline sharks

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Re: Google
« Reply #4 on: January 20, 2006, 02:17:55 pm »
Hi Dave.

Would be useful to know how much we raise per click on an ad. 

If each of the regular users clicked on one ad per visit then it might add up quickly and wouldn't be to onerous on us as "users".  After all it pays for the site. 

I'm a little loath to do this though if the money isn't worth it.  They must have given us some guidance for you to consider it.

Have we considered hosting it ourselves to reduce costs?  I'm pretty sure Paul and James have the technical know how (even if they won't thank me for suggesting it).

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« Last Edit: January 21, 2006, 09:41:51 am by David Brewer »
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2006, 02:26:11 pm »
Hi Sharks,

Just to make it clear, Positive Internet has not asked for money. They have hosted this site for free for eight years. However, I'd like to try to pay them back.

If people can live with the ads, it might make be worth giving AdSense a go. I put it on at half nine this morning and it has already earned the site $6.95. That's about $1 an hour so far today. If it can earn that in one morning, I think we can probably generate enough revenue to reach independent financial sustainability.

If local firms take advantage of the the Google 'Advertise on this site' feature at the foot of each ads (it enables local ads to appear instead of countywide or nationwide ads) then that income will increase.

I'd like to see how this goes for a week or so. I will report back on how much revenue is generated.

David

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« Last Edit: January 21, 2006, 09:42:10 am by David Brewer »
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Offline sasquartch

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Re: Google
« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2006, 03:23:35 pm »
Can't really say why, but I think 'commercialising' the site would be a shame.

The site has always been completely independent of any commercial influence and I think that it would be better, if funds did have to be raised to sustain the site, they came from a local sponsor rather than a multi-billion dollar American company.

I don't know the amounts of money involved so maybe Google is the only option but just looking at the adverts on the front page none seemed to be BP based.

I liked the way that the site was run along the lines of the BBC, ie non-commercial and (supposedly) unbiased.

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« Last Edit: January 21, 2006, 09:42:27 am by David Brewer »
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #7 on: January 20, 2006, 03:39:09 pm »
Can't really say why, but I think 'commercialising' the site would be a shame.

The site has always been completely independent of any commercial influence and I think that it would be better, if funds did have to be raised to sustain the site, they came from a local sponsor rather than a multi-billion dollar American company.

I don't know the amounts of money involved so maybe Google is the only option but just looking at the adverts on the front page none seemed to be BP based.

I liked the way that the site was run along the lines of the BBC, ie non-commercial and (supposedly) unbiased.


Hi Paul,

I agree. I have kept it ad free for eight years, but I thought it was time to see what the site could generate. The AdSense has been live for six hours now and it has earned $12 already.

It is still independent, the Google advertisers have no say over what goes on the site. If local firms sign up, then all the ads displayed will be local. That should generate income for the site and for them.

Let's see how it goes.  My problem is that the ads don't look very nice, but I am trying to fiddle with the code to make them look more like content on our site.

David

Editor's Note: Edited only to change thread heading.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2006, 09:42:42 am by David Brewer »
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Offline Cassie

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Re: Google
« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2006, 05:50:57 pm »
David, I don't really understand  ???  Does this site make money every time someone clicks on one of the sponsored links.

I clicked on three Fiat ones earlier so hopefully I've helped to raise a bit of cash for you.

Were there three Fiat ones because a Fiat was in the personal ads which showed up on the front page?

(sorry to be asking such a basic question)


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« Last Edit: January 21, 2006, 09:42:58 am by David Brewer »
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #9 on: January 20, 2006, 06:27:21 pm »
Does this site make money every time someone clicks on one of the sponsored links.

Hi Cassie,

It seems quite complicated, I am trying to get my head round it. Here is what the help file says.

Quote
You can maximise your revenue potential by displaying Google ads on your website. Google puts relevant CPC (cost-per-click) and CPM (cost per thousand impressions) ads through the same auction, and lets them compete against one another. The auction takes place instantaneously, and, when it's over, AdSense automatically displays the text or image ad(s) that will generate the maximum revenue for a page -- and the maximum revenue for you.

Basically, there is a measure for an ad just appearing on the page. Then there is a measure for an ad that is clicked on.

I had a few free days to fiddle around with this. I've tried to make the ads smaller and more in line with the general look of the site. I've resisted the colourful banner image ads too.

By the way, if any parents are worried, I have selected the safe mode, which prevents Google displaying ads for things that could cause offence.

David

Editor's Note: Edited only to change thread heading.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2006, 09:43:15 am by David Brewer »
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Offline Cassie

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Re: Google
« Reply #10 on: January 20, 2006, 07:07:55 pm »

By the way, if any parents are worried, I have selected the safe mode, which prevents Google displaying ads for things that could cause offence.

David

Just as well,  if the ads are related to what people advertise here it could cause all sorts of things to come up if someone had a Large Chest For Sale ;)


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« Last Edit: January 21, 2006, 09:43:30 am by David Brewer »
 

Offline supersonic

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Re: Google
« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2006, 10:39:17 pm »
Had to giggle...........

The TB Hospital tread has the following Google AdSense adverts on it  :)

Infectious Diseases are a Major Cause of Death Worldwide. Learn More - You Can Help!

Infection Control Large range of hygenic IT solutions Inc Keyboards Mice Computers Carts.

Legionnaires Disease Don't go to prison for running a sick water system - contact us!


supersonic
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #12 on: January 23, 2006, 10:47:58 pm »
 :)

I've noticed that many of the rotating ads currently appearing on the site are for kitchens and bathrooms or dating and website design. It would be nice if they were all local ads. That can happen, but local firms have to sign up with Google and then stipulate on which site they want their ads to appear. So far it doesn't look like any have.

If any local business are interested in checking out how much it costs there are instructions on this page.

David
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Re: Google
« Reply #13 on: January 23, 2006, 11:25:23 pm »
I've just noticed that the one on the Buncefield thread are all for fire extinguishers!!!! :)
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #14 on: January 24, 2006, 11:33:54 am »
I have updated the Google search facility on all pages on the main site (not the forum). There should now be two options on every non-forum page. One to search the whole World Wide Web and the other to search this site only.

I suggest you use the second option for detailed word searches of the Brookmans Park Newsletter and Forum in order to save you having to sift through thousands of returns.

If you want to search outside this site, please use the first option.

Any feedback or suggestions welcome. You can message me through this forum's internal messaging system.

David
« Last Edit: January 24, 2006, 11:38:45 am by David Brewer »
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Re: Google
« Reply #15 on: February 01, 2006, 07:36:22 pm »
The team running the Brookmans Park Newsletter has decided to remove the Google search and AdWords from the site following Google's decision to allow the Chinese government to censor Google search results in the country.

Reporters Without Frontiers has described the decision as "a black day for freedom of expression in China." More on this on BBC News Online. A campaign has also been launched to boycott Google products.

Ten days ago we introduced Google AdWords to this site. Since then it has raised $100 for the Brookmans Park Newsletter. We have now frozen that account and will not withdraw that money until Google reverses its decision.

Unfortunately it means we will be without a search facility on the site until we can build our own. Apologies for any inconvenience.

David
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Offline Alfred the Great

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Re: Google
« Reply #16 on: February 01, 2006, 09:50:44 pm »
Sorry to be thick but what is the point of this action? If it is intended as a protest then I don't think Google will worry about us as we are far too small. Also, what option did Google have?
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Re: Google
« Reply #17 on: February 01, 2006, 10:43:38 pm »
Hi Alfred,

It just seemed wrong to benefit so directly (through income) from a company that was, by its actions, helping to suppress freedom of expression and block out information about human rights abuses.

It’s worth reading the Human Rights Watch page on China for more background.

James is busily looking at alternative search facilities for the site. I am sure we will have something to plug that particular gap soon. As for losing out financially, Positive Internet has, as always, said it will continue to support this site without charge.

David
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Re: Google
« Reply #18 on: February 02, 2006, 09:55:42 am »
Flipping heck Dave.  Have you been reading that Grauniad again?

I don't like a lot of the things this government does, but it doesn't mean I'm going to stop using the NHS.  If we applied this logic to everything (ie I only deal with companies whose actions are totally in accordance with my own political beliefs, irrespective of the environment that they operate in) we'd be hard pushed to deal with any multinationals.

If you want to change something, this isn't the way to go about it.

Apart from that, you're all doing a great job.
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #19 on: February 02, 2006, 10:01:33 am »
Flipping heck Dave.  Have you been reading that Grauniad again?

Funny you should mention that Andrew, there was a good article in the Media Guardian yesterday reporting on the Al Jazeera Forum on Media Freedom at which both Google and a Chinese media professor discussed this issue. I know you might find this hard, but if you click on this link to the Media Guardian, you can read the report.

 ;)

BBC News Online's technology section is also leading with an update on the story. Click here for more.


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Offline ADM

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Re: Google
« Reply #20 on: February 02, 2006, 11:55:54 am »
The al-jazeera forum...

Now here's three reasons I don't like them:

First, it has been Osama bin Laden's propaganda outlet, taking delivery of his videotapes and broadcasting them. Second, it has shown footage of the bodies of two dead British servicemen, and of captured troops paraded by this country'e enemies.  Third, it shows far more harrowing pictures of civilian casualties than western outlets are prepared/allowed to run, and it blatantly peddles the propaganda of this country's enemies.

For the record, I am against human rights abuses (even though my running shoes were made in China but actually bought in the US).  I am for a free press (I have even crossed to the dark side and registered with Meeja Grauniad).  But the way to get China to lighten up on censorship is not to deny them access, not to give them ultimatums, but to get them using the media with whatever ridiculous provisos they insist on.  Over time they will realise that any sort of censorship can be circumvented and in any case says more about the regime applying the censorship than anything else.  I know it sticks in your craw, but it is the way forward.

Now swallow your principles and count those dollars rolling in.
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #21 on: February 02, 2006, 04:47:46 pm »

I am for a free press (I have even crossed to the dark side and registered with Meeja Grauniad). 


Well done Andrew. Enjoy.

 :)

We can consider using the Google ads and search again if they change their policy. Mind you, we might not need to. We used to have our own search for the site and we should be able to build a new one soon. Also, there are other more local banner ad services available if we want to go down that route again.

David
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Re: Google
« Reply #22 on: February 03, 2006, 04:15:35 pm »
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #23 on: February 03, 2006, 06:13:04 pm »
Two searches. Both on google:

http://images.google.com/images?q=tiananmen

http://images.google.cn/images?q=tiananmen

Spot the difference.

Thanks John, I hadn't seen that. I've tried it with other words too and the different results returned are amazing.

By the way, we are still working on finding another search engine for this site. Hopefully it won't take too long.

David
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Re: Google
« Reply #24 on: February 08, 2006, 10:37:48 pm »
We have introduced a temporary search solution on the site following our decision to remove Google. It is on the left hand side of every story page and at the bottom right of the front page of the site. It is a not perfect solution – it takes you away from this site for the results (and it doesn't seem to index every page), but it will have to do until James comes up with a better option (which he is working on).

On another, but related matter. A week ago, Google wrote to this site accusing the Brookmans Park Newsletter of generating invalid clicks on the Google AdWords programme.

The email arrived the day after we had removed Google AdWords from the site.

The Google email read, “Publishers may not provide incentives of any kind to encourage or require users to click on the ads, due to the potential for inflation of advertiser costs. If we find your account to be in violation again, action may be taken against your account and payment may be withheld.”

I replied to Google saying that no incentives had been provided to users of this site and that I took exception to the accusation that we had tried to engage in fraudulent activity.

I pointed out that the Brookmans Park Newsletter had more than 600 registered users and hundreds of guests who were free to click on whatever they wanted to. I also asked them to supply evidence that the site had been generating invalid clicks.

Google replied saying “We understand that you wish to receive specific information regarding the invalid clicks we observed on your account. However, due to the proprietary nature of our algorithm, we cannot disclose any details about how our monitoring technology works or what specifics we found on your account.”

Google then went on to suggest that we examine the site’s logs to look for “suspicious activity”.

“If, in the future, you suspect that invalid clicks may have resulted from a visitor to your site, we suggest that you review your site's logs for any suspicious activity and notify us with your findings,” they wrote.

I replied to Google setting out this site’s privacy policy and pointing out that we do not engage in spying on how people use the Brookmans Park Newsletter and nor will we. Not only is it against our policy to examine the database, but we don’t have the time either.

Google’s reply stated that “Google will use its sole discretion when determining instances of invalid clicks.”

I informed them that the AdWords had been taken off the site on February 1 and the account closed on the same day. I invited them to use the money that was raised by people clicking on the ads ($97.07 in ten days) for a charity of their choice.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2006, 10:38:59 pm by David Brewer »
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Offline Cassie

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Re: Google
« Reply #25 on: February 08, 2006, 11:06:51 pm »
How odd that they consider anyone clicking on something which is available to all could be considered invalid.

 ???
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #26 on: February 08, 2006, 11:11:56 pm »
It seems they were worried about the amount of clicks being made. Perhaps they thought it was out of proportion for a small site.

They also wrote "As a reminder, any method of generating invalid clicks is strictly prohibited. Invalid clicks include but are not limited to any clicks that are generated through the use of robots, automated clicking tools, manual clicks by a publisher on the publisher's own web pages, or a publisher encouraging others to click on his ads."

I replied that I had clicked on the ads a few times after putting them on the site to make sure they worked and that the sites they clicked through to were suitable. A person who builds a site always has to check that the links work before making them live.

Anyway, apologies to all users for going down that route in the first place.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2006, 11:16:37 pm by David Brewer »
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Re: Google
« Reply #27 on: February 08, 2006, 11:29:25 pm »
Perhaps it was us all looking for Cassie's "Large Chest for Sale"
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #28 on: February 08, 2006, 11:35:24 pm »
 :)   ;)
 

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Re: Google
« Reply #29 on: February 08, 2006, 11:40:34 pm »
You should be able to look in the logs and see if there were a large number of clicks in a short time, without compromising the anonymity of the users.

As it’s late – here’s a conspiracy theory:
Imagine that someone with reasonable IT skills was annoyed enough with Goole, possible for the China censorship. They could write a bot that walked  the internet looking for sites which used Adword, where they could generate a massive number of clicks. This would make Google’s ‘click through’ business model unsustainable.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2006, 11:46:33 pm by John Fraser »
 

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