I read Tim Bray’s post on how putting up ads from Google’s AdSense is starting to make him money. This made me think about the program.
Can Google’s AdSense be rigged by bloggers? Just as bloggers blogroll each other and (supposedly) ramp up each other’s PageRank, can a similar ring be set up with these ads. Now, there is a commercial interest too. Say, there are 20 of us. All of us agree to carry the Google Ads. (Cavaet: Google is filtering out personal pages from sites which are authorised to carry the ads, but that may not be too difficult a rule to circumvent.) Then, we each agree to click on the ads on each of the 20 sites. Assuming each ad makes 15 cents or so, 20 clicks can make me USD 3. Imagine doing this daily. Does Google keep histories of IP addresses to filter? Do the advertisers? I don’t know. But I can imagine outsourcing the clicking business to people in India, and splitting the money with them! Is there really a free lunch?
The reason I am speculating about this is for the first time the individual site owners now have a vested interest in gettings ads on their site clicked on. They make money directly for each click. I cannot imagine the advertisers being too thrilled about this. Let’s wait and watch.
On the same toopic, Don Park has an interesting comment: “popularity of RSS feed usage is on the upswing and will eventually lead to majority of blog news being consumed via news aggregators. This means Google will have to get into the news aggregator business (?) eventually. Sure, they can do this with from the server side, but to cover all the bases, Google will need a client-side aggregator as well.”