Since the beginning of the internet, there have been various conspiracy theories about big companies stealing data from users and abusing it, especially by forwarding them to various ad companies for money. While some ten years ago people were reluctant to reveal any kind of personal info online, the rise of social networks has made them behave exactly the opposite – gladly sharing everything from their personal relationships, private pictures and other info that could be used in various ways.
Skeptics have warned people not to reveal too much info online, but even if you don’t have a social network profile, your info is still being misused. Remember the last time you sent an email through Gmail and pay attention to the ads on the side. What’s strange is that all the ads somehow seem to correlate to the topics you’ve mentioned in the previous emails. It’s not a coincidence that just a day after telling your best friend about the terrible headache you had, there is an Advil ad on your Gmail page. It feels like a major breach of privacy to have someone use the info from your personal emails like that, but the people from Google headquarters deny reading them but admit that some software might be used to match words mentioned in your email with the Google ads. But this is just the beginning…
The biggest problem with Google is how powerful of a search engine it is. Thanks to its incredible info flow, Google can control the majority of information, like which search terms are used the most, which sites have the best rating and so on. This information is worth pure gold for advertising companies who can base their strategies based on the data collected on Google. That’s why the one who controls the internet has got the power. And that’s how AdSense was born.
Google has been running AdSense since 2003, and it’s basically an application that allows its users to have a pay per click or pay per impression ads that Google administers and maintains. Just in 2011, Google has earned nearly 2.5$ billion just on AdSense. You’d think that this is much, but that is not everything they have been up to.
Due to info leak, it is revealed that Google has been running another secret digital network reserved for major companies and selective clients only. The internet mogul John Chow has revealed on his blog that he received an invite from Google Display Advertising Network which has been active for a while now. Google currently doesn’t admit to having another ad network but it has clearly been working for some time. It is based on a CPM model and designed to sell ads to Fortune 1000 companies that want to promote their brands. Names like Pepsi and Motorola are just some of the big sharks in the game. Currently it works as invite only, but it’s a matter of time until Google finally makes it public.