I Vote Using Adsense!

I was reasonably shocked in 2012 when I saw an “Elect Romney” ad on my own website. As you might know by now, I am clearly not in their camp! Yet their ad showed up on my site. Even worse: in 2016, Trump showed up on my site because I had forgotten to block him.

Ads like these show up because I use Google’s Adsense ad program on this website (for example, there should be an ad right now in the sidebar and another one below this post). While their context-based ad placement strategy often works, during an election time, those content-based ads can easily be outnumbered by a barrage of “vote for me” ads. Although I wouldn’t mind having the income from those ads offset my hosting costs, I can’t get myself to supporting “the other guy”!

If you feel similar (and own a website, of course), then you should block any ad that comes from an undesirable source, like these:

  • gop.com
  • donaldjtrump.com

Here are the steps:

  1. Log in to Adsense
  2. Go to Blocking controls > Content > All sites to see the screen included above
  3. You can then enter a list of URLs whose ads you would like to block on your site. Just make sure “All products” is selected in the dropdown on top, otherwise you are just blocking those ads for single services like content or mobile.

That’s it! As it turns out, you can actually get Google to help you vote and keep the riffraff off your property!

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