Back when I was on the buying end of Google AdWords, I discovered how draconian the company was when you tried to buy certain terms. Your website had to match certain requirements – no pop-ups, for example – and then you were charged an arm and a leg for intermittent rotation and you liked it. Well, it seems the bloom is off the rose and any punk with a domain name and a dream can screw thousands out of their cash.
Ben Edelmen has collected some of the most egregiously fake and fraudulent AdWords advertisers while performing standard searches like “Skype” and “Firefox.” Many sell otherwise free software, charge you big bucks for free ringtones, and offer fake versions of popular software like Ad-Aware. Where is Google’s “Don’t Be Evil” Police now? Maybe they’re too busy working Google Shoe Organizer Beta.
False and Deceptive Pay-Per-Click Ads [BenEdelman]