TV Tropes is in trouble

Okay, I’m not here to drum up support or anything, but since it’s a site we all love (even if it sucks away our time), I thought I’d mention this.

TVTropes just had their ad revenue system pulled out from under them. Google Ads is suddenly enforcing requirements that I’ve not even seen enforced here. They’re doing some restructuring to comply, but the end result will be less revenue, and the site barely breaks even as it is.

Here’s a link to their forum thread discussing it.

I have permission from the mods to post this. I chose Cafe Society because that’s where the site is used most often.

I have no idea what I’m looking for in that thread. Can you link to some posts that clarify the matter? (I’m not digging through 35 pages). And what usernames are of people from the site itself?

ETA: You should have said "Tropes is in BigTrouble, for no reason other than it amuses me greatly.

That is a bullshit decision by Google.

Frankly, the SDMB is in trouble if they get audited by Google.

Wow, that is bullshit, if my understanding is correct. It’s just words, right? There’s no pics or video?

Doesn’t that definition compromise at least 90% of the internet? It’s amazing anyone can use Adsense…

OK, I skimmed the first three pages and the last page (currently page 39) of that thread and from what I can glean, Google has temporarily stripped the ads from TVTropes. The site admins are currently in the process of removing any adult-content tropes (fetish tropes, porn tropes) and moving them off-site; they are also removing AdSense links from all forum pages and pages that take user comments. I think. Not clear on that last bit. They seem pretty confident that this will result in Google reinstating their ad account, but unfortunately it’s going to take a little time to get everything done and then have Google review it, and they don’t have much of a financial cushion while the ads are down, so they’re asking for donations.

If someone actually familiar with the situation wants to correct any of what I just said, feel free.

On the other hand, if the site goes away, productivity in the US will increase by 7.84%.:D:D:D

From reading the thread, it seems that there aren’t any credible alternatives to AdWords. I’m nothing close to a lawyer but that just screams antitrust to me.

Well, I just donated $5. For an unsympathetic skinflint like me, that’s like pulling nails.

That’s how I understood it. I have to admit, I was so angry at Google that I didn’t read the whole thread. But I did get further in.

There’s a little bit extra: they will have to have all users agree to a certain terms of service. Many are afraid that anonymous editing will be completely shut off, and that emails will be required; the lack of both are considered big draws to the site. But FastEddie (superadmin) believes that a click through agreement should be enough.

The forums/user content pages are going to be completely supported by Amazon ads or other services, because Eddie does not believe there is any way to make sure that no NSFW content will be posted. If anyone knows of a way to satisfy Google on that, I’m sure they’re all ears.

They’re hoping that actual Wikipages will be sufficient with just rules about not adding pornographic examples.

And, yes, I’m concerned about what this means for the Dope as well, as I said over there. I know we are far from the only place I’ve seen with both Google ads and NSFW textual content.

ETA: Oh, I almost forgot. They are having to add the ability to flag wiki pages for NSFW content, and are going to have to do a lot of editing to the pages that are supposed to be kept.

Actually, I should have linked to the Administrivia page about the subject instead of the forum:

The Google Incident (aka TheSituation)

Oh no! I’m not done reading it yet!

(bolding mine)

Where have I been for the last month or so? Reading TV Tropes. That, and other life situations. But largely reading tons and tons and tons of that site. I’ve been doing the Wiki Walk due to the Browser Narcotic qualities of TV Tropes. I love that site!

Oh, and all pages that use one of the 7 words from Carlin’s skit (or asshole) also count as NSFW. Seriously.

So what you’re saying is that just by you saying “asshole” in this thread we could potentially lose ads here at the SDMB?

This is such bullcrap.

I see that some ads are back (FWIW). Amazingly prick-headed move by Google.

You know, of all the pages on the web that use AdSense, I honestly have no idea how TVTropes would even have blipped across Google’s radar. I would certainly have never even THOUGHT about them being obscene or anything like that.

There’s a theory on their page on the incident that someone officially complained to Google. At least, that’s their best guess.

This is utterly absurd. Google siding with Steve Jobs to suppress free speech?

My theory is that it was one of the many people who have been banned for trolling. Couldn’t they have just joined a splinter wiki or something?

Considering TV Tropes’ primary writer base, there *may *be some anime tits displayed in the most obscure recesses of the site. And that’s a strongly conditional may, 'cause I don’t remember stumbling upon any. There might also be links to very, very NSFW pages.

There are, however, discussions and entire pages on porn tropes, and cunts. Sorry, country matters. Language is also completely unrestricted, and people who try and censor or bowdlerize the existing content get weeded out pretty quickly.

Still think Google’s decision to pull the ads is bullshit, mind you. I mean, even on TV Tropes, they don’t talk 'bout pan-fried semen, know what I mean ?