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Adult Content

  1. Paul Edmondson profile image
    Paul Edmondsonposted 9 years ago

    Dear Adult Author,

    Since we launched the site just about one year ago, we have learned a lot about what our users want, and how to make HubPages a sustainable business. Part of what we have learned is the challenge of adult content and the attitudes of our business partners towards it on HubPages.  We attempted to be a open publishing service, where authors are free to publish about any topic they desire.  Unfortunately, we have reached a point for our small team that we do not have the resources to appropriately maintain and build the site to keep adult content and meet our sustainability objectives.

    In the next few weeks we will unpublish all the adult content.  It will still be available in your account for you to copy and paste elsewhere.  We will also update our terms of service to prohibit publishing of adult content.

    As a community, a website, a service, and a business, I invite you to publish Hubs on topics that are safe for all viewers.  Thank you for contributing to the success of HubPages and I welcome your feedback on how we can continue to improve HubPages.


    Paul Edmondson

    1. mrkrabs profile image60
      mrkrabsposted 9 years ago in reply to this

      Hi Paul
      I'm sorry, but I don't believe your words. I'm 100% sure that you only prohibit adult content because squidoo has been punished because of that!
      It just doesn't make any sense. You are making way more money  than needed to host adult content.

      1. darkside profile image84
        darksideposted 9 years ago in reply to this

        Squidoo hasn't been punished because of porn.

        The "Squidoo Slap" is rumoured to be the result of various reasons, one theory is because of spam.

        Not because Squidoo is spam, but Squidoo was attacked by spammers.

        Spammers whether it was because of iframe redirects, poor quality pages, duplicate content. If it were solely because of porn why would Squidoo still keep the adult lenses?

        Hubpages Inc could hardly be accused of following Squidoo because Squidoo hasn't taken such action.

    2. 59
      jonikiposted 9 years ago in reply to this

      I agree completely with the change. We all have to understand there is a business being run here. I'm sure Paul & Co. had a ton of things to factor into this decision and it was probably a tough call.

      Losing traffic? Maybe short term from that generated by the adult sites but long term the traffic will be much stronger.

      I believe the reality is anyone surfing to look at porn on hubpages does not care to read about my latest fishing trip etc. so I do not believe it was a benefit per say to the mainstreamers.

      DO I believe the "traffic hit" suffered over the last week or so played a factor? No doubt about it and there was a "slap" factor involved. It is too widely reported with other 2.0 sites being slapped for the same thing to believe it was not a factor.

      The search engines are the life blood of a site like hubpages or squidoo and there HAS to be a certain amount of catering to keep them AND the mainstreamers the search engines like happy.

      Good business call and kudos for being brave enough to make it.

      The reality is the adult hubbers needed hubpages more than hubpages need them. Adult competition is fierce with billions of sites and to build a stand alone website, optimize it and get a decent PR is almost impossible.

      Web 2.0 sites were coming and were coming strong with or without adult content and they will continue strong without it as well.

      Paul attempted to blend you guys into the community and you made good money from his FREE to join site and now you jump on him for making a good, sound and practical business decision?

      1. 61
        informerposted 9 years ago in reply to this

        Partly agreed, since adult traffic doesn't seem to be profitable for hubpages.com itself (AVNads was really the worst solution they could pick), but looking at my adult hub accounts and mainstream ones, it's a serious traffic loss for hubpages. My top adult hub, just as an example, gets up to 40k hits a day. Never seen any of my mainstream hubs get close to this.

        Absolutely true.

        Agreed, the phenomenon did hit sites like wordpress.com, blogger.com, etc. as well. Looks like google doesn't want to make it too easy for authority sites to rank well all over the index. I think the times when making a hub and just getting it crawled was good for an excellent ranking are over. In addition, hubpages suffered from duplicate content which is now disappearing while the sites gets crawled again.

        The engines don't prefer mainstream, they prefer quality content, no matter if adult or mainstream.

        Conversions are better in mainstream, but getting ranked well for popular search terms is as hard as in adult. Long tail small niches is the way to go for both, so I don't see a difference in how much adult or mainstream webmasters "need" hubpages. Getting decent rankings all depends on the niche and keywords you are targetting, if you don't think out of the box you are lost in adult and mainstream. It's not like adult are the bad spammers and mainstream webmasters produce quality content only...unfortunately, it's a widespread prejudice.

        Yes, although I'd guess that the majority of strong links directly to single hubs are from adult sites trying to push hubs. Adult webmasters are pulling links and this will negatively affect hubpages, at least mid term. Just for my hubs over all accounts, it was 12 PR5, 31 PR4 and several hundred PR0-3.

        I think most adult hubbers respect and understand the decision, although many believe it's wrong. I'm involved in various mainstream web 2.0 projects as well and the problem is: If you don't allow adult, it's doesn't mean that people respect this and don't add adult content to your site. Yes, it's sad, it's not ethical, but where's easy traffic, there are people looking to grab their share. For protecting minors from stumbling upon adult content, it's often better to allow adult, having it separated from mainstream and save the time for finding and deleting hidden adult content.

        Please excuse that I don't post with a "real" account, but people have copied complete hubs and stolen my content to publish it elsewhere way too often...

  2. barranca profile image78
    barrancaposted 9 years ago

    Paul,  Three cheers as far as I am concerned.  Barranca.

  3. jimmythejock profile image81
    jimmythejockposted 9 years ago

    That is a very brave decision guys and I hope that you don't lose too much revenue through it good luck.....jimmy

  4. 62
    Night Crawlerposted 9 years ago

    Seen this coming thou cant say im not surprised one bit. I Wish you guys the best for hubpages but just to let you know you just burnt alot of bridges by doing this and the ones who got you here wont be there for anything else you start up. Good luck with all your future endeavors and thanks for the good times why it lasted. smile

    1. jimmythejock profile image81
      jimmythejockposted 9 years ago in reply to this

      hubpages was growing more and more sucessful everyday before adult hubs came along, and I am sure it will continue to grow without them, as for burning bridges, the hubpages team may have burned a few but removing porn will help repair the bridges of a great site and build newer and better bridges.

      1. 62
        Night Crawlerposted 9 years ago in reply to this

        jimmythejock you will see over the course of time how it effects there traffic
        to hubpages. Me myself have over 1000  hubs across 11 or more accounts. Little under 3k a day form se alone so thats 3k a day gone of traffic there gone alone not mention all the other adult hubbers out there. It never fails thu the adult community always get it first but what can you do. Folks dont
        realize how much traffic adult webmasters push but they find out after the fact. Just watch there alexa ranking over the next few months when the adult stuff is unpublished. Like i said best wished to the hubpages crew and the mainstream hubbers on here. smile

  5. Angela Harris profile image75
    Angela Harrisposted 9 years ago

    I hope that what you say isn't true. I believe that the adult hubs were too easily accessed by anyone and that turned a lot of people away. I think in the long run that this decision will increase visitors. But it's just my .02 and probably not worth that much.

    1. 62
      Night Crawlerposted 9 years ago in reply to this

      Actually what i saying is based on my experience of 7 years in adult. This is not the first time this has happened with adult material nor will it be the last.
      The online biz is a cut throat game now and to many choices to pick from these days. Now i gotta disagree with you about the adult hubs were easly
      easily accessed by everyone. Hubpages did do the right thing by categorizing them as adult and removing the adult tags from the tage pages.
      So if you clicked you did know what you were getting.

      Now if you are referring to children seeing the pages then the adult pages should of been labeled with the correct software coding that would help RESPONSIBLE parents who use Internet Filter Software these days. Needless  and sad to say thats not many at all. As For your 2 cents i value it and i appreciate your input  big_smile

  6. Stacie Naczelnik profile image89
    Stacie Naczelnikposted 9 years ago

    Well HubPages has my support in this, probably more so now.

  7. sporsfanX profile image69
    sporsfanXposted 9 years ago

    Now how are people going to find porn? smile

    Will a drop in overall site traffic/number of pages/number of links decrease the "importance" of Hubpages in the eyes of the search engines?

    I hope not.

  8. VascoDaGama profile image59
    VascoDaGamaposted 9 years ago

    I don't see anything brave about it, I think your team has to examine it's brains. It's adult webmasters who helped a great deal for your site to grow, and now you kick them in the butt.

    Well since you don't want some extra cash, this means someone else will make an adult hubpages clone and earn that money.
    I only hope you will follow the state of Squidoo and get penalized by Google for spam as well. Since viagra and gambling scams don't fall into adult category and aren't going to be pulled.

    I know some people who fell for this gambling shit and put their lives in danger. One even committed suicide over what he lost. Untill you pull this as well I don't respect you any more. I'd rather see them watching porn than losing everything they have.

  9. Paul Edmondson profile image
    Paul Edmondsonposted 9 years ago

    This last week, our traffic to quality and safe content was stronger than ever.  This is a proactive step to improve the quality of the site and preserve our good standing for the benefit of the larger community.

    We believe this change and improvements to our moderation systems will ensure that we do even better together with content that is safe for all viewers.

    We considered making a HubPages clone for adult authors.  Unfortunately, we don't have the resources to support the development effort at this time.

    1. darkside profile image84
      darksideposted 9 years ago in reply to this

      HumpPages big_smile

      1. jstankevicz profile image81
        jstankeviczposted 9 years ago in reply to this

        tooo funny lol

  10. darkside profile image84
    darksideposted 9 years ago

    I daresay it would have been a tough call to make, and not one that was made in haste.

    Not having published any adult content lenses I'm not going to feel the same emotion and attachment. Though if Adult Hubbers will realise that anything I have to say is not an anti-porn stance then they'll get a better idea of where I'm coming from.

    Porn has a place in society. It's entertainment. Certainly it can take a grip of some peoples lives but that can be said about anything. Whether computer games, gambling, alcohol... even crossword puzzles can become an unhealthy obsession.

    When I see naked bodies I don't neither froth at the mouth or feel guilty or disgusted.

    I am mindful though as to what my kids are exposed to. Especially other peoples kids.

    I had a good plan on pitching Squidoo to local schools as a way for them to publish assignments online and make a few dollars. Money that could be used to buy books for the school library.

    Squidoo had a couple of advantages over Hubpages, mostly that it uses Paypal as a means to receive the revenue. While on one hand I think HubPages system which utilises ones own Adsense and Amazon accounts can mean more money for the Author, it would require a few more steps of explaining to teachers, principals and the P&C committee (or in the US: P&T) the hows, whys and hows of registering affiliate accounts.

    I pitched this idea at a journalist. But not just any journalist. This person with whom I discussed the idea co-ordinates a region wide school newspaper competition.

    Her only concern, after I explained how it would work, is whether or not the site (Squidoo) would have any questionable content (ie: porn).

    While there is a splash page warning of adult content and people are supposed to rate their own lenses whether they are G, R or X rated, and of course we're seeing a LOT incorrectly rated lenses, with just a few clicks or a search a school kid could quite easily be viewing porn on the school computer.

    With 20 to 30 kids in a class a teacher has only so much attention to give to each child. They are supervised, but it would take just 10 seconds of porn on the computer for all hell to break loose when parents hear about it.

    I honestly didn't want my butt whipped and kicked when my sole intention was to do something good for the community.

    Now the only reason why I'm outlining this is to point out how easy it is for kids to access porn. Which can easily be done with a Google Image Search. But at the end of the day if I owned a website that I wanted to be safe for EVERYONE then it'd need to be bereft of pornographic imagery.

    Sad but true.

    If more people in the world were just like me they wouldn't really give a toss about the odd bit of exposure of boob or even the occasional penis.

    Though due to hindsight and judging someone elses plans AFTER they've been executed is a very easy thing to do. Had I gone into such a venture blind just like the good folk at HubPages Inc I probably would have gone the very route they did.

    And now they're stuck with trying to plug the holes.

    Despite not being a gambling man I think it's safe to bet that any Adult Hub Author who has posted in the forums here would be the type of person to correctly rate their own hubs appropriately.

    And I don't think it would ever have been the intention of HubPages Inc to give them the rough end of the stick.

    But it's easier to police a No Adult Policy then trying to keep in line the ones that aren't so mindful in doing the right thing. It's a never ending battle. One that I've seen played out on a daily basis at Squidoo.

    I wish Adult Authors the best in finding a new home. Though there's benefits in not having your eggs in more than one basket (such as having some mainstream projects in addition to your adult stuff).

    I do believe HubPages will continue to grow and prosper without the adult part of the equation. It may see a drop off in visitors, but I don't expect it will be detrimental to the long term prospects of HubPages.

    If the powers that be ever consider making SmutPages big_smile then I may blow the dust off some of my wife's erotic fiction that she penned when she was younger and publish it online wink

  11. jstankevicz profile image81
    jstankeviczposted 9 years ago

    I'm not an adult author (second childhood not withstanding) and welcome the change. There certainly is going to be a cost in traffic and revenue for HubPages and its hubbers with this change. Great explanation Paul, and I really appreciate Night Crawlers reasoned and calm dissent. Regards, Jack

    1. 59
      TastyOneposted 9 years ago in reply to this

      Hey thank you for the kind words jstankevicz dont hear that much from mainstream guys. Most folks categories adult webmasters as the "bad" of the internet.

      1. darkside profile image84
        darksideposted 9 years ago in reply to this

        It's spammers who are the bad guys of the internet.

        And they can be found in adult, mainstream, anywhere you wish to look... they'll be there posting nonsense in a desperate effort to get traffic.

        If they made the same effort to do something legitimate they'd actually be a lot better off.

  12. 61
    thothraposted 9 years ago

    I have over 200 adult hubs that generated 10-15k hits a day, the majority of them from google. I'm gonna lose a bit of money at first but I'll reproduce them elsewhere on my own server. I saw this comin tho. I figured that Paul and co. built this site to ultimately sell it and investors usually steer away from adult. So the writing was on the wall when they cut off the internal hub traffic to adult pages. It was only a matter of time.

  13. Ralph Deeds profile image68
    Ralph Deedsposted 9 years ago

    Dumping the "adult" Hubs is the right thing to do IMHO, because, as Paul noted, porn and family participation don't mix well. I guess porn has it's place on the Net, but in segregated sites. However, I wonder what your definition of adult content will be?? I hope you don't go too far toward prohibiting an occasional risque joke or artistic nude, non-pornographic photo.

    Ironically, so-called adult content is really pretty juvenile while serious political commentary is, in truth, much more adult. However, not a whole lot of hubbers appear to be interested in serious political commentary.

  14. SunSeven profile image60
    SunSevenposted 9 years ago

    I guess we can do with some censoring in the request area. Here is one request I found particularly inappropriate
    "Should Be Removed"
    If we don't do that, it may prove detrimental in fighting adult spam.

  15. Angela Harris profile image75
    Angela Harrisposted 9 years ago

    Sharp eyes, SunSeven. Definitely inappropriate.

  16. Stacie Naczelnik profile image89
    Stacie Naczelnikposted 9 years ago

    I agree, that should be removed.

  17. Paul Edmondson profile image
    Paul Edmondsonposted 9 years ago

    It's removed.  Thank you for reporting it.

    It's very helpful when this kind of stuff is reported so we can take it down quickly.

    We are in the process of improving our flag this page feature and it should be out very soon.  This will help keep HubPages even cleaner.

    Thanks again.

  18. Guru-C profile image54
    Guru-Cposted 9 years ago

    Maybe now, my Mom will come back :-)

  19. VascoDaGama profile image59
    VascoDaGamaposted 9 years ago

    I like the power of Hubpages due to fast Google listings on serps. I always thought why this was in case, as it's rather unfair, because there are much older sites with much more content being jumped over by spammy adult hubs created within 15mins - 1 hour. So I've finally  thought about it: you can't beat them so simply join them. And created a few adult hubs as well.

    Now that adult gets dumped, I will post gambling hubs instead (being an ex-pro bettor I know a lot of things worth posting). I still see these high rankings as unfair though and hope Hubpages follows the fate of Squidoo some day. This will be only fair.

    Good luck with your sellout and hope you'll start a new project that allows adult, since it paid a lion share of getting you such a high trust at Google before.

    I know this is business and can accept "thanks for helping us now please go away" attitude, and therefore wish you luck.

  20. Paul Edmondson profile image
    Paul Edmondsonposted 9 years ago

    HubPages never made much income from Adult content.  We tested AVN Ads, but the effective CPMs were so small that it didn't justify the risk or the other opportunities down the road.

    If we do open an Adult site down the road, I'd love to hear more about how people are monetizing their adult content.

    1. SexyDip profile image59
      SexyDipposted 9 years ago in reply to this

      Hi Paul,

      rebilling memberships are the best way to make adult traffic to money. IMHO a lot of ads on a hubpage will bother the surfers and let you earn just a few cents. If you sell memberships to niche sites you can earn good money.

      All you would have to to is to filter your traffic by niches and sell rebilling memberships from paysites.

      This is working for me since 1996 cool

      Let me know if you are still interested in an adult clone for hubpages...

      1. Paul Edmondson profile image
        Paul Edmondsonposted 9 years ago in reply to this

        In the case of a HubPages clone, would you charge authors to make adult Hubs a small subscription fee or would you charge the people that want the content?

        1. SexyDip profile image59
          SexyDipposted 9 years ago in reply to this

          I would sell the people proper niche memberships from paysites. Maybe you add one or two ads with the hubpages affiliate id or let authors signup under you affiliate id and use the tier 2 systems out there. So hubpage.com will earn about 10% of the adult sales.

          There are a lot of ways to earn some extra money cool

        2. darkside profile image84
          darksideposted 9 years ago in reply to this

          Unless the content was owned by the Hub Author they (or you) couldn't charge for it. But that would end up being quite complicated if they did, with having to keep 2257 documentation.

          SexyDip explains how it would work...

          So you'd have a list of sponsors that people could promote, and they'd sign up to those programs under your webmaster referral.

          Any subscription they sell, you get 10%. Now that equates to about $1.50 however... if that's if its revshare. If it's PSS it'd be more, but at least with revshare that means for the life of the subscription. So if a person signed up and was billed for 10 months that's 10 x $1.50.

          Again, not much, but if you multiply that by X amount of Authors promoting their sites and you multiply that by X amount of subscribers, then it starts to add up.

  21. SunSeven profile image60
    SunSevenposted 9 years ago

    I can't believe this. Are you so desperate to go that way Paul?!

    (I take it back Paul., I angered relache. I did'nt mean it that way. I am sorry)

    1. relache profile image88
      relacheposted 9 years ago in reply to this

      SunSeven, you don't have to be so rude to Paul just because he wants to ask someone a question.  Having a conversation is not a sign of desperation.

      1. SunSeven profile image60
        SunSevenposted 9 years ago in reply to this

        I guess there is no room for(a little bit of) humor here!! LOL!!!

      2. SunSeven profile image60
        SunSevenposted 9 years ago in reply to this

        I was not rude. No point in not having even a little bit of fun over here. LOL!!!

  22. Paul Edmondson profile image
    Paul Edmondsonposted 9 years ago

    I see.  That's similar to what we do with the affiliate programs on HubPages. 

    I'm a bit surprised that there isn't a good contextual network for adult.

    1. 61
      informerposted 9 years ago in reply to this

      There are a few good smaller ones, like contexaclick.com, but unfortunately they don't have many publishers and advertisers, so they only work well for certain niches, like webmaster traffic for example.

      The problem with AVNads, the Adbrite adult spinoff, is the quality of their publishers and advertisers, they don't seem to pay enough attention to who joins their network. Users reported sites with spyware/malware/trojans, their ads run on torrent sites and the overall revenue from their ads, compared to monetizing a site with targetted niche affilite programs, is very bad.

      The PPC many adult affiliate programs offered was abandoned many years ago, since the ammount of fraudulent clicks, hitbots and proxy traffic was out of control.

      As for monetizing an adult hubpages version: SexyDip is right, a very effective way would be to

      a). Run your own ads on adult hubs, preferrably dating, livecams and male health products which appeal to a very broad audience (that's done by most big free adult blog hosts like thumblogger.com).
      b). Use webmaster referrals to adult affiliate programs. Almost all of them offer a webmaster program with 5-10% commission for all signups from referred affiliates.