New Delhi, 7 July-2014,( IT): Internet giant Google has instituted new algorithms in its decade-old AdWords program, which enables ads to be placed through searches on the website, to make it more difficult to advertise pornographic material. The change comes on the heels of a larger effort by Google, started in 2013, to prevent bloggers from making money by posting ads for online pornographic material through the AdWords program.
Google bans adult advertisements in search index
In a statement to both individuals and organisations advertising using AdWords, Google stated, “Beginning in the coming weeks, we’ll no longer accept ads that promote graphic depictions of sexual acts including, but not limited to, hardcore pornography; graphic sexual acts including sex acts such as masturbation.”
The twist has caught most of the porn industry off-guard, with many of them viewing this change as an obstruction on the most popular and generally effective method of advertising porn. With many of the big porn corporations based in the US, lobbyists are claiming that such changes infringe upon their right of free speech.
Here we can see that on a simple local search, in Noida, of the word “massage”, 3-4 advertisements pop up suggesting spa services and commercial massage parlours nearby.
But, specifying the search to say “sexy massage”, we now see these advertisements disappear. This means that the majority of ads linking to those keywords were pornographic in nature.
This general trend by Google to reverse the expanding and free nature of internet pornography has been ongoing since 2012, when they announced the first major plans for safer searches through keyword manipulation. However, the pornographic content is still very much accessible through specific searches on the Google website and Google has subsequently denied any accusations of censorship.