Tuesday, October 31, 2006

October 31st, 2006: Happy Halloween & AdSense NonSense

Howdy, all! A very Happy Halloween to all of you out there in CyberSpace! Here's a lump of sticky candy from me to you!

* toss! *

Woops. Sorry about that. Nothing worse than candy stuck in yer hair...

Anyway. As you may have noticed, Episode 28 is drawing to a close. Still a couple more surprises on their way, so don't tune out just yet!

Meanwhile, some of you may remember that a couple months ago, Google ads started popping up on the Pirate Cove website. I had enrolled in a program called "Google AdSense" which, in addition to tracking the number of visitors Pirate Cove was receiving, provided me with about a buck a day in revenue. Not exactly an ad program destined to allow me to retire... but I didn't mind. I was more interested in watching the daily hits graph, etc.

Well, after about 2 months, Google owed me a little over $50 in revenue. They said they were going to send me a check and to please confirm my phone number. Next day, they shut down the ads, told me I was in default of their policies, and to kiss the check goodbye.


I wrote them for details and their reply was: there were unauthorized clicks on the ads. I wrote again, asking them to explain what that meant. They said that it is against their policy for me to tell people to click the ad links and that it is also against their policy to use an automatic link clicker (or something like that.)

Once again, I replied to inform them that, yes, I told people to USE the links if they saw something interesting but I wasn't using an automatic link clicker... heck, I wouldn't have any idea of where to FIND such a thing, much less the ability to set one up! I wanted proof. I wanted details. And I asked them for it. Well, they refused. The links had invalid clicks, their word was law and too bad for me.

Guess they needed the $50 to fund their purchase of YouTube.

Again I wrote, this time asking them "so what you're saying is, if I went to someone's website, saw they had Google Ads, and started clicking them at random, you'd shut down their account? That hardly seems fair to the website owner."

No reply.

So I sent them one last e-mail, requesting the name of Google's attorney because I would like to discuss the situation with them. After all, in a legal case, the with-holding of information is against the law.

They never replied.

It would be kinda stupid for me to ask y'all to stop using Google as a way of protesting their less than professional attitude, but I thought I'd mention my situation anyway. It's been a couple weeks since the incident and I wanted time to cool down before posting anything about it here.

So just remember: if you're ever on a website and you see "Ads by Google," whatever you do, DON'T CLICK THEM! You might be screwing over whoever owns the website! After all, those links aren't there to be clicked! Pretend they don't exist! 'Cause if you click too much, who knows? Perhaps the Google Police will come to get you!

Ooooooo! Scary!

Viva Las Vegas!

- J!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

October 17th, 2006: Hither and Dither

I'll be the first to admit: I'm not always a consistant person. In fact, the only thing I think I've managed to stay consistant with for an extended period of time has been PIRATE COVE! So much for the Blog, eh?

Not many people know this, but I maintain a double life. PIRATE COVE isn't my full time job. I actually work a 40-hour-plus week at a motion picture production company in good 'ol Hollywood! So there's my excuse for not updating the Blog or getting back to your e-mails in a timely manner.

I can't complain about being too busy, tho, as I've found time for a couple escapes over the past month. A couple weeks back, I got invited to the Playboy Mansion for the Cedars-Sinai Charity Celebrity Tennis Event. Lots of free food, silent auctions for charity, Playmates, Hef, and the opportunity to wander the grounds at will... ah, the life of a semi-famous cartoonist!

Then, last weekend, I assisted World-famous photographer / model train layout designer / band road manager / album cover designer Larry Dupont in moving his latest work of art out of his back room studio for transport to its new home in San Diego.

Lemme tell ya - this guy is incredible. Those pictures aren't of a real mountain or desert. He molded the rocks, he painted the desert, he built the tunnels. I think he worked on this for over a year!

Anyway... how about some PIRATE COVE news? I have some, you know. I'm not here to just ramble on about my private life. Here goes:

1) For those of you who've come up to me at conventions and asked - nay, DEMANDED - printed copies of the PIRATE COVE comics in book form, then demand no more. The first book will be available in DECEMBER. Just in time for Christmas. I'm working on figuring out the pricing at the moment. I'd love to be able to put these out in full color, but I also want to keep the price down. More info on this to follow.

2) As Episode 28 slowly but surely wraps up, I'm still planning on taking a break. Not as long a break as originally planned, tho. Episode 29 will probably start up in late December. I'm also considering switching to a "weekday update only" schedule. Sometimes the weekends kill me.

3) There will still be updates to the site during my hiatus. I'm planning on adding more books to the "BEFORE THE COVE" section and throwing out a few other surprises in the meanwhile.

OK, back to the grind goes I. Actually, I'm going to lunch. Stay tuned for more updates. I promise I'll try to log in to The Captain's Table more than once a month!

Viva Las Vegas!

- Joe!