Update: admedia365.com appears to be spyware. If you’re seeing ads from them, your system is infected. Please see this post.
Maybe a couple weeks ago, I noticed on MicrosoftBlog.com that my AdSense spots had some graphic ads in them. That’s not odd as I’ve opted in for that. These were different and I had noticed them elsewhere on other sites, in locations that I didn’t think were served by Google. So, I moused over them to see where they were linked to. admedia365.com. I then saw these ads in more and more places over the last couple weeks. Like, a lot. Major sites, small sites, etc. I’d never heard of the domain before, so I was kind of curious about it. A Google search brought up nothing.
No big deal. I went about my business until the day before yesterday when I saw this on phpBBHacks.com. Girls eating fruit? By itself, harmless. In this context, it implies something I don’t want and is not appropriate for general audiences. Having seen admedia365.com ads in my Google AdSense only spots on MicrosoftBlog.com, I contacted Google to ask them how to block it. They couldn’t tell me if they served it, but their e-mail and the related documentation helped me to hopefully block it, assuming it came from them. I haven’t seen it since.
Today, I was on ESPN and what do I see, but another admedia365.com ad. But, this one is worse. Before I link to it, just a warning… it’s rather risqué. No nudity, but ladies in lingerie, in various positions with text that is… well… inappropriate. Here’s the ad. (If you don’t get the ad the first time, try refreshing it. There seems to be some sort of web layer embedded in the .gif?) Now, you know ESPN doesn’t want that. It’s totally inappropriate. But, they likely didn’t know. admedia365.com got into their rotation and started serving these ads without some sort of approval, which isn’t how it should be. I sent ESPN an e-mail this morning and received a very quick reply telling me that my e-mail had been forwarded onto the proper party.
(Edit at 10:55 AM on November 2, I just saw the above ad on Yahoo! Finance).
(Edit at 7:03 PM on November 2, I just saw an “adult content found!” (just a mock Windows dialog box, no graphic pictures) on Cartoon Network).
Note that I haven’t received any complaints about these ads. But, it’s not about complaints, it’s about what’s appropriate and these just aren’t, in line with our goals. Not that there is anything wrong with the ads, but they are something that one needs to opt in for, generally speaking. They are not the type of thing that should be automatically served on a run of network, general consumption basis.