Maybe a quick status update is in order. My Adsense account is restored. Late afternoon yesterday ads started to reappear. My only conclusion is that the removal of the offending article brought the expected results. I still haven’t gotten any notification from Google. Thus, I am just guessing. It’s on today’s list to do some more research on probable causes. There’s a slight chance that a unconfirmed phone number associated with my account caused this, but it has been unconfirmed for more than 2 years.
Having the Adsense trouble off my plate is a good thing, since I can now focus on NBIMMO, the New Blogger Initative that got started yesterday. One of the things I did last night was to sign up for about 100 blogs on my RSS reader, 80 sponsor blogs and 20 new blogs. I also followed them on twitter if there was an ID posted. I’ve now started to actually read / scan those blogs. The idea is to hook up more with the community, just like it is the intention of NBIMMO.
© Disclaimer: Guildwars 2
© 2011 ArenaNet, Inc. All rights reserved. NCsoft, the interlocking NC logo, ArenaNet, Arena.net, Guild Wars, Guild Wars Factions, Factions, Guild Wars Nightfall, Nightfall, Guild Wars: Eye of the North, Eye of the North, Guild Wars 2, and all associated logos and designs are trademarks or registered trademarks of NCsoft Corporation. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
My Guildwars 2 beta weekend wasn’t much fun, because I was distracted by troubles with my blog. When I wrote my first post on Saturday morning, I noticed that there weren’t any ads visible. The Google Adsense console also showed that they hadn’t served any since the day before, but Google Analytics showed normal site traffic. Strange. Two other websites I am working on didn’t display any ads, either. Fearing the worst, I expected an email telling me that my Adsense account had been disabled, but that hasn’t happened as of the time of this post. I created a trouble ticket with Google hoping to get some help there.
Things like this can mess up my weekend. I ended up checking my email for answers from Google frequently. And every time I checked my email, I looked for other ways to fix the problem or reasons why the account should have been blocked.
This continued until today and will probably last a while longer. However, I have one scenario which is most likely: The Adsense policy clearly states that your site has to be squeaky clean in regards to content. No adult content, no hate speech, no drugs, tobacco or alcohol. In short, everything an advertiser wouldn’t want to be associated with.
So what’s wrong with an MMORPG blog? Nothing. It’s completely acceptable. Except when you write an article about Hardcore gaming. And use that word frequently in your article. And it is used in the comment section as well. Add a link to a blog who’s got the offending word in its title. And use that word in your post title, the tags and meta tags and -descriptions. Meta tags and -descriptions is text that’s visible to Google and other search engines to make it easier for their bots to analyze your content. And I just told them I have content on that page they don’t like.
I should have written that article about guns in MMO’s. Guns in general, and perhaps dual pistols in particular. But no, I have to shoot in my own foot.
I’ve taken down the post in question, hoping the problem goes away. Perhaps there will be an acceptable way to repost. But just to be clear, I haven’t gotten any communication from Google if my troubles are caused by this single article. But I have some more indicators pointing in this direction. Until then, there are backup ads from another provider. Plus a single Adsense ad below the blog roll, which is currently not being served.
This blog has gone through some changes in its appearance since I started it, somehow indicating its change in content. So why stop now? I am an able programmer, know the basics and some of the inner workings of WordPress and I am having fun working with web site designs and layouts. Oh, and it might get a business started, or at least it might get me a job.
I am not much of an artist or graphics designer, but it’s fascinating anyway. Ever since I joined Google+ and saw their changing layout, I’ve been trying to recreate the style, but wasn’t very successful. Look at this website for my first attempt: http://cooklikeaguy.com/. It’s all white, and that’s about it. But now more and more sites have popped up using and improving the theme, Guildwars 2 among them. The style is called “Minimalist” which strives to reduce a design to only elements that are needed for the object to function. Among the websites on my blogroll, Milady’s Hypercriticism has a perfect Minimalist design. I’ve been looking at the layout of that website with envy ever since I noticed it. Of course, I have been staring even more intense at that web page over the past weekend when I finally made up my mind about a new layout.
I’ve been experimenting with various WordPress themes over time, some of them premium themes (Gabfire Themes, Elegant Themes), and some of them free like Arras and Suffusion. I wasn’t much of a friend of Elegant Themes, since they don’t handle ads in a way I like it. But the more I looked at their Aggregate and Minimal themes the more I wanted to use them, until I finally caved in and added my own coding to support ads. I also made some other changes while I was at it.
What you see here now is the result of a couple of hours work this weekend. I have a few more things to change and move around, but the basic layout is there already. Hope you’ll like it.