UPDATE: Our Adwords account has been restored! Click here to read about it: Google Adwords Account Unsuspended!
Note: We like to dot our i’s and cross all our t’s here at the Electron Plumber. A reader pointed out that since we did not receive express permission from Google for posting their support email correspondence, it’s not a good idea to post it publicly. We have since requested permission from the Adwords support team to post our full correspondence here. We’ll let you know what happens, but I’m not crossing my fingers for a response saying we’re free to post it. Note that so far they have been extremely civil in saying that there is nothing we can do to appeal the suspension.
Last week I wrote about how Google was finally going after the Google Money Tree scam advertisers and that our Adwords account here at the Electron Plumber had gotten caught in their very likely automated net. We had placed some ads for our article on the Easy Google Profit scam using a couple of keywords that had no warning posts appear in the Google search at the time.
A couple of months ago if you had searched for “Los Angeles Tribune News”, the only sites you would get were the LA Times and various other real California newspapers. Now if you do the same search you find our warning post right at the top, but back then I though, heck, we have some free Adwords credits from our hosting account, why not use them to buy some cheap Adwords ads and direct people to our post on the Los Angeles Tribune News site scam. Maybe we’ll gain some loyal readers or RSS feed subscribers and at the very least maybe we’ll keep some people from getting scammed.
Then over the 4th of July holiday, we receive an email:
Google Money Tree Account Suspension Email #1
*Google message not posted pending approval from Google for publishing. Similar message can be found here*
Our first reaction was “Hurray! Google is finally going after these scammers!”, but then it sunk in that Google was placing The Electron Plumber’s efforts to warn people about these scams months ago into the same bucket.
The Electron Plumber’s Email to Google Adwords Support
From: El Plumber
Subject: Ad Approvals and Policies (AdWords)
Date: Tue, 07 Jul 2009 02:17:35 +0000
I think we got caught in your automated net. We did NOT submit ads that promoted any such program, but in fact submitted ads for people to find information about how these programs are scams and how to avoid them.
Please visit our site promoted in the ads (http://electronplumber.com) to see for yourself.
Can you please review my account suspension, as it’s completely unwarranted.
Since it’s obviously a mistake and likely no one at Google bothered to come look at our site at all, they just trawled an automated net for certain keywords, I figured, should be easy to fix right? Wrong.
Google Money Tree Account Suspension Email #2
*Google Response not posted pending approval for publishing* Basically very nicely said “sorry, you’re toast”.
The Electron Plumber’s 2nd Email to Google Adwords Support
Hi *name removed*,
I appreciate your response, but I’m very confused.
Please have your supervisor contact me regarding this matter at their earlier convenience. I have informed my site audience of this matter and I think you’ll agree that a false ad suspension isn’t particularly good news for either of us.
Google Money Tree Account Suspension Email #3
*Google Response not posted pending approval for publishing* Basically very nicely said sorry, you’re still toast, nothing we can do about it, please stop bothering us.
The Electron Plumber’s 3nd Email to Google Adwords Support
Hi *name removed*,
While I certainly appreciate your help in this matter, I’m still very concerned here, as I’ve been falsely accused with no recourse toward an appeal. Has anyone actually looked at our site? How have you determined that I promoted anything even remotely like Google Money Tree? Anyone who had taken 2 minutes to glance through our site would see that every single article talks about how these Google Money sites are scams and instructions, advice, and a place to vent an chat for people who have been caught in them. I don’t even link to any of them except where people added comments about them.
I do not intend to stop contacting you about this matter until it is resolved, as you have falsely accused my site and account of doing something that we did not do in any way shape or form. If you truly have a no appeals process for things like this, have canceled my account unjustly, and have no review process, I need to let people know about it.
If the support team cannot help me in this matter, please direct me to the correct department at Google for getting a matter of false accusation and suspension resolved.
I again ask that you put me in touch with your supervisor or manager so that I can get this resolved.
That last message above was only an hour or so ago, so I’ll keep you posted on any replies. I certainly don’t have high hopes here for getting any positive outcome out of a giant faceless corporation like Google. But the principal of it, that somehow we here at the Electron Plumber are in league with these Google Money scammers makes me want to continue.
Anyone have any suggestions on how to proceed or any inside channels on the Adwords team?