Google Bans AdWords Ads for Being Too Sexy

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Google has blocked the serving of AdWords contextual (or AdSense) display ads in the European market of US lingerie company Pampered Passions because the company has deemed the ads as having adult content.

The Pampered Passions campaign invites men to buy lingerie for their loved ones for Christmas, but the tone and skin shown in the ads were deemed to risque for Google.

Google’s representative stated : “The ad has been disapproved for adult content. Only family safe images will be approved. Images which are classified as non-family safe or adult content are disapproved and will not run. Your image contains nudity and mature themes.”

Trying to soak up all of the publicity they can after the ban, Pampered Passions issued this statement in a press release:

“Google’s refusal to show ads that are completely acceptable to UK audiences on their network is turning out to be an increasingly frequent occurrence. Google are an American company and while they might seem to be really ‘cool’ and ‘liberal’ in the USA, their policies do seem rather conservative for European consumers. An outright ban on ads no ruder than a Christmas cracker joke & featuring less flesh than a swimwear catalogue seems pretty ‘uncool’ to us”

If anyone has a image capture of the ad, please send it to me at lorenmichaelbaker AT, I’d like to see how adult the ad was and whether this sexy display ad campaign was uploaded for the goal of being banned and the press it would receive. Thanks!

Loren Baker
Loren Baker is the Founder of SEJ, an Advisor at Alpha Brand Media and runs Foundation Digital, a digital marketing strategy & development agency.
Loren Baker
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  • SEO for Yahoo Small Business – Terry Reeves

    And be sure to post those pix here so we all can investigate this horrendous act of censorship.

  • Loren Baker, Editor

    Oh yes Terry, I’ll give them a keen investigative eye, then will be sure to post them 🙂

  • Web Design

    Who decides at Google when some ad is too sexy and is breaking their rules?

  • Dan Sundgren

    There is also the question I often have of why Google allows certain text copy in as well. I have been trying for weeks to get them to pull these fake consumer guide ads down and check out the copy on the Keyword “people search” they use words like “rip off alert” and “scam alert” and basically badmouth all the legit people search companies advertising in the auction, all in the hopes of promoting their 3 affiliates on their scam “consumer guide” landing page, so scammy ! and GOOG wont do a thing about it.

  • Ken

    It’s not only Pampered Passions… I have been trying (very unsuccessfully) to get this banner ad
    for our lingerie site approved by google and they continue to disapprove it for the following reasons:
    “Unacceptable Image/Video Content”
    According to their terms:
    Your images may not contain:

    * Any material intended for persons over 18.
    * Mature sexual themes, nudity, and/or sexual activity.
    * Crude or indecent language.
    * Offensive or inappropriate content.

    Other than intended for persons over 18 (which an ad for a home load would fall into but…) I suppose the only possibility is “Mature sexual themes” — but that’s seems to be a stretch. I have had to go with Adbrite to get my banners published, but i’m not a huge fan of them.
    Any suggestions?

  • ChicagoShmoe

    There’s a site that I use called to track my Google SERP positions. You can submit up to 3 keywords per report and once it’s there, it’ll be displayed in a graph. The site link is … Its definitly free to use and once it generate the report for you, there’s some helpful hints as well too. Hope this help anyone out there who’s looking for a free seo tool to use.

  • Web Design Romania

    hehe, pics anyone ? thanks for the post