Sunday, June 22, 2008

For fun and prophet

Not long after I started blogging, I hooked up with Google's advertising program that places ads on your blog based on the content of your blog posts. In theory you get paid for the number of real people who click on the ads and actually go to the advertiser's site. Google apparently has some code on the ads that prevent you from simply going to your own blog and clicking on the ads yourself until you are a millionaire. Personally, I think that is kind of shitty of them.

Secondly, (I wanted to avoid having to insert an author's note later about this not being my first point in this post) the placing of ads based on blog content doesn't really work for my blog. There is no rhyme nor reason to anything I blog about. So I imagine I leave the server that sorts through the content scratching its memory chips in confusing wondering what kind of ads to saddle my site with.

This is not to say I haven't made any money off the ad scam. After almost fours years of blogging I've received two checks from Google for $100 each. A glass half full kind of person would say that's $200 I wouldn't have had. A glass half empty kind of person would point out that I'm being paid less than a bathroom towel attendant in India to write my blog.

A former co-worker of mine writes a blog and promotes it vigorously by mass e-mailing people (including me) when he has a new post. And every now and then he makes a plea for people to click on the ads on his blog to help him finance his blogging passion. Okay, loss of dignity through begging aside, Google strictly frowns upon people in their advertising program pleading for people to click on ads on your site to artificially inflate their click-through rate. Needless to say, I don't read this guys blog let alone click on his ads.

Okay, I'm obviously not into blogging for profit. If I was, I'd write content that promoted widgets (an unknown product produced by the Acme Company and largely sold to coyotes trying to kill roadrunners). Then the Ad-bot would be able to place ads consistently that matched my content and hooked suckers who could be reeled in by the people who sell widgets.

I've said this before, but I'm really glad no one pays me to blog. It is kind of an experiment in free speech after all. Once you start profitting or propheting, freedom gets bogged down in the desire to perform. Monkeys dance faster when they are motivated by reward or frequent shocks to their genitals. But they don't necessarily dance as well as when they do it because they enjoy it.

Therefore I don't profit from blogging and I am a prophet to no one. This monkey doesn't like to dance.
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