The Google Adsense Quandary: a comment. I Want To Make Money, I Want to Provide a Service. I Want to be Ethical.
Days are numbered for content-for-clicks writing with google adsense
I just read this article about the future THIS YEAR of Google.
I picked it up off of the hubpages blog today. I have to admit that in some ways I am guilty of the same thing. I write so that I can boost my adsense earnings. But I also write for another purpose. I love it. I want to write. I also love finding out about the world we live in. I am that person who at the age of 39 (soon to be the big ‘four-oh’) stares into the face and back of a spoon and says ‘wow, cool.’ Maybe it’s because I work with kids. Maybe it’s because as a Christian I just love God’s world so much I want to find out as much about it as I can. It’s an exciting place out there folks.
So put all this together and you can see that I love the research involved in finding out new things and then writing about them. It becomes an interesting question therefore whether or not I am writing to make money, or I happen to make money because I am writing, and whether or not google adsense is the way to do it.
The community of knowledge builders that never cite
Say 10 people go and work out how a widget works. They separately come up with ideas, but not one of those ideas works well by itself. Another 5 people come along and read about these ideas and each one rethinks those original ideas into something new – they kind of mix it together. Then those ideas filter down to one person, who takes that widget concept and actually puts it into production. It has all the features of the original 10, and yet it took the final person to put it all together. And that one person makes a lot of money from it. Should that person then go and give all the money that they have made to the 15 people who went before them? Should they in the box of each product attribute the rights to those original thinkers? No, this does not happen.
Indeed, the intellectual property of the web is so mind blowingly large that over and over again people are reinterpreting that data a multiplex number of times…but each time it adds a little of themselves, or at least it should be that way.
The problem is when someone doesn’t do that. They put out crap just so’s they can make a fast buck from google adsense, and the people who put their trust in it.
Are you a content filter, or a content thinker?
Now I think that there are two ways in which a google adsense entrepreneur CAN use existing information ethically.
The first is to become a hub of information. They can pool the information that is out there on their subject so that it effectively informs a would-be browser/researcher more efficiently than if they were simply to be left to trawl the web for all the articles written. This is the FILTER writer.
The second way is to add new ideas and reflect on those ideas that have gone before and reapply them. This is the THINKER writer. I think that I am a little of both.
So let’s go back to my earlier premise, my love of writing. Of course I like to make money. It’s called looking after my family. How do I know what to write about? I use good research to know the things that people are looking for, and then I find subjects that I think that I would like to write about – self indulgent I know. And then I will go out and read a load of stuff that relates to that subject, and mix it up with my own opinions and experiences. Sometimes I will cite the information, or if it is something I have read a few times in a few different places I won’t, I will consider it community knowledge.
Then I go and work out what I need to do to make my article findable by those who are looking, and make it valuable to them, and make it valuable to me by choosing one keyword over another. Same topic, different keyword. Let’s face it, what is the point of writing if no one will read it or can’t find it? I have another blog, a free wordpress blog. So it has no adsense or anything else on it, I make no money from it. And yet I put more time into that than anything else, AND I still do my SEO properly. Why? Because I want the people who I am writing for to find it so that I will benefit them.
And hopefully, just hopefully, as Google unleashes it’s anti-content farm blast across cyberspace I will be able to come up producing original content that is useful, and that they will see as useful. And the spammers who just produce junk writing and don’t add anything to the community knowledge builders will finally find themselves unloved by Google-juice.
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