And the rise of the Internet Missionaries!
Since last couple of months the Hindi readers of internet must have been noticing that in almost every Hindi page, where the a banner advertisement from Google has been displayed, shows the advertisement that takes you to a web page which advocates a particular religion, namely Christianity. The advertised web page is a section of the website named Jesus.net . The obvious and very clear mission of this "missionary" website is to proliferate Christianity by means of convincing the readers through the 'miraculous' powers of Jesus. This advertisement takes you to the Hindi section of the website where everything is written in Hindi. This page has quite a lot of 'testimonials' which testify the power of Jesus being the one who brought happiness to these people.
This is the new age missionary mode of work and propagating a religion. Welcome to the new age of religious breed.
Going by the rules of displaying advertisements, Google categorically says it has "category filters" where one can customize the types of advertisements that can show up on a web page. However, at the same time, Google says that this category filter is available only in a few languages. Of course Hindi, or any other Indian languages, do not have this kind of 'support' from Google. So, even if you wanted to block these types of advertisements from appearing on your web page, it will not work. I am sure this "category" filter works only in a few languages, mostly European, which are predominantly Christian countries.
That means that if you have a web page written in a language other than English or some of the European languages and you subscribed to Google's Adsense program to show advertisements on your page to get some doughnuts, you would be in fact propagating Christianity!
I have not seen advertisements of such kind on any page written in English that bears Google's banner advertisements. But your Hindi page or for that matter Thai or Bahasa Indonesia or Kannada or Tamil will show this advertisement. The internet missionaries are back in business!
How does this happen? How can you not control such advertisements?
Well, most of the bloggers out there are interested more in getting the hits and rendering those page hits in some bucks through Google. This is a fiercely fought out business of the internet. Advertisements are the sole source of revenue generation for almost all of the bloggers interested in generating some money through their blogs or vlogs. When they subscribe to Google's advertisement display program for their pages on the web, they generally do not apply any filters. Even if they applied any category filters, it would not work because Google does not support such categorization of filters in these languages. Most of the users simply leave this system. There is also another kind of blocking system offered by Google to block such advertisements. These two features are known as "Competitive Ad Filter" and "Ad Review Center" where you can block one particular advertisement or the advertiser. I do not know how many out there know about it. My guess is that many simply do not know this and unknowingly advertise what they do not want and would very like to be changed for some other kind of advertisements.
To them my suggestions is that guys please review the kind of advertisements you want to show on your pages or you would simply be inviting the wrath of the very readers you wanted to attract!
Where is the Technology Lacking!
Well, Google does not have yet got the necessary research material done in Hindi or other Indian languages to support such automatic categorization of the advertisements. Even if there is some mechanism, it is mostly unknown to the users.