Folks, I know some of you are amazingly supportive, and really want to see Writing About Writing succeed. And I know that not everyone has money in the budget to donate. Some of you have told me how you click ads, and even gone into detail about how you click them all the time.
Unfortunately, this doesn't really help me.
Every time I do an appeal post, I mention turning off ad blocker (which you should do for any of the sites you like so that they can make money and actually keep being the sites you like), but I also always emphasize that people shouldn't just blindly click on the ads. Click if you actually see something you like, but don't just click them for no reason or to "help me." (Like I said, it doesn't help me.) Still I always have people bragging to me about how me they click "hella ads" or click all my ads every time they log in. Sometimes I see my "Day's Earnings" suddenly jump from 5 cents to $8.23....and then go right back down to 5 cents a minute later.
So let me be a bit more explicit.
I know you want to help, but you shouldn't click those ads unless you really see something that you are actually interested in. Google is able to tell there's shenanigans going on. I don't even get the money when you do that. And there is a possibility that if it happens enough, Google will flag my account and remove the ability for me to host ads--which is about 1/3 of what I'm making right now.
Google Adsense is basically the most sophisticated online advertising software that exists. So there are all kinds of ways they have to determine whether the clicks I get on ads are "real" or not. Everything from many clicks in rapid succession to multiple clicks from a single ISP address. They even know just about how many ad clicks to expect from how many unique page views (I think it's about 1 to 1000), and if an account starts going way over that, they know something is rotten in Denmark.
So please, please, please, please believe me when I tell you that I greatly appreciate what you're trying to do, and you make me feel warm and fuzzy inside, but unless you see something you would normally click an ad to check out, just let it be.
If you really want to help, the best thing you can do for me would be to share one or two (or ten) of your favorite articles. My biggest problem right now is getting myself "out there."