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Australian Sex Party May Sue Google Over Ad Refusal 183

New submitter niftydude writes "Australian newspaper The Age is carrying the story: The Australian Sex Party has threatened Google with legal action after the search engine refused to run its ads on the eve of tomorrow's Melbourne by-election. It comes after Sex Party ads were blocked by Google at the last federal election because the company — which is typically opposed to censorship — perceived the text as too racy (the ads were reinstated by Google the day before the election). Sex Party candidate Fiona Patten said this time the search giant said it would not approve her ads 'because we have a donate button on our page and we're not a charity.' Don't all political parties allow donations? Is google imposing its own sense of morality onto Australian politics?"
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Australian Sex Party May Sue Google Over Ad Refusal

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Google has now interfered in the elections of a sovereign nation. Google must be destroyed.

  • Sex Party Candidate: "Is google imposing it's own sense of morality onto Australian politics?"

    No, but if you keep confusing "it's" with "its" you may find people imposing common standards of grammar on you. That can't be good for your credibility. As if being a self-proclaimed mouthpiece for a sex party wasn't bad enough.

    • Maybe Australia needs a pedantic grammar douche party.

      • It's funny how Americans always find the use of correct grammar to be a chore.

        Do they not realize what the point of grammar and orthography is? It makes it easier to understand the sense of what they're saying, which in turn enables easier communication between people.

        • >>>Do they not realize what the point of grammar and orthography is?

          We were educated by the government. What do you expect? Good outcomes from a government program???

    • by Farmer Tim ( 530755 ) <roundfile AT mindless DOT com> on Saturday July 21, 2012 @02:56AM (#40721841) Journal

      It's not "a sex party", it's "The Sex Party"...that is, it's a political party with policies centred on sexual and gender issues [], and has nothing to do with putting your car keys in a bowl.

      I should explain that Australian political parties usually have deceptive names. For example, the Liberal Party are the conservatives, the Labor Party usually puts everyone out of work, One Nation divided the country before forking itself, and the National Party doesn't field candidates in most electorates. The Greens are pretty much what you'd expect, though until recently their leader was a chap by the name of Brown, so while technically they tried to fit in it was a predictably feeble effort. On the New South Wales state level we also have the Christian Democrats, whose values are hardly those of Christ and is run by a religious oligarch, and the Shooters and Fishers Party, which is a reasonably accurate description but they put the "jerk" into "knee-jerk".

      And if you exercise your comprehension skills you'd find the grammatical mistake was on the part of the submitter, not the candidate.

  • I believe a relevant policy page is here [], basically unless you're a charity you can't use the donate button or they can freeze your account. The buy now button is available for others but is only supposed to be used for physical goods apparently, not sure whether intangibles like subscriptions or software qualify. I know some places just use the buy now button and sell crummy little tokens or somesuch and people basically make donations that way. Still, political parties should definitely be eligible for th

    • by fatphil ( 181876 )
      > unless you're a charity you can't use the donate button

      According to TFA, they're tax exempt, just like the other political parties who are using a donate button.

      Is this incompetence on google's part, or is it malice? Google are notoriously incompetent, I have proof of this as another one of their head-hunters approached me the other day, apparently unaware of the fact that I repeatedly say that they both are evil and suck. They'd better hope they're incompetent, as if it's malice I reckon (http://www.y
      • by Jiro ( 131519 )

        I'd go with incompetence. "Sex" is a very obvious keyword to use to automatically ban ads for something based on a keyword search. Follow up with bureaucracy lying about the reason they banned the ads because they want to pretend they banned the ads for cause instead of because nobody read them. I wouldn't be surprised if they also have internal policies about sexual ads and that even though those ads are not actually sexual, nobody at Google will unban the ads because overbanning won't get you fired but

  • by geekd ( 14774 ) on Saturday July 21, 2012 @02:11AM (#40721635) Homepage

    I can't advertise my own band on Google. They refuse my ads again and again. Free music. It's MY music. My band wrote and recorded it. They will not let me advertise it as free.

    The ads take days to get denied. Then I change it and it's days again to get denied. Eventually I just gave up.

    On the other hand, the ads for free web games I make get approved in hours.

    • On the other hand, the ads for free web games I make get approved in hours.

      Put your music in your web games. Problem solved.

      • by geekd ( 14774 )

        Already on it. :) My web games are in HTML5, and it sucks how bad the audio in HTML sucks. Actually, it sucks how bad HTML5 sucks. My next game will be in flash. I know how much of a dead end flash is, but that says something about how much HTML5 sucks, doesn't it?

        Could I write "sucks" a few more times? What does that even mean?

        • by Pieroxy ( 222434 )

          Could I write "sucks" a few more times? What does that even mean?

          My question exactly. What exactly sucks about HTML5? You message would be a lot stronger with specifics than just repeating "sucks" 1000 times.

    • See, because you didn't plug your band (and I can't find any reference to it on your linked website) now I'm genuinely curious. I'm all for free music, and despite the occasional itunes purchase the vast majority of my (admittedly small) library is free.

      Drop us a link, would you please?

  • They were (gasp) text ads - nothing lurid, no links to pictures of hot heavy action.

    Perhaps they didn't live up to the moderators' standards of a nice good racy ad?

  • They are running ads for other parties who are soliciting donations from their site. I haven't seen ads either way, nor did the linked article directly state that they were hosting ads for other parties that were soliciting ads. If this is in fact the case, I'd be truly disappointed. Before I jump to that conclusion, I'd like to see the ads that are being posted for the other parties rather than jump to a conclusion based on a potentially biased source.

    After all, this is the internet we're talking about,

    • After all, this is the internet we're talking about, right? If the ads exists and the other parties are soliciting donations from their sites, we should be able to see better proof than just texts that alludes to something.

      This is Slashdot - there's a policy against direct links to informative material. If you must provide a link, it has to be either to a previous Slashdot story or else to an advertisement-heavy set of 10-15 linked pages, each of which contains at most two sentences of information.

  • Google is just giving the masses what they want. When someone googles for sex party, they want to see a party with a whole load of sex going on, not a political advert.

  • On the basis of this advertisment I would have given them my second preference at least.

  • Using google to learn more about this political party is not without obstacle... some may even say it's hard. The search results often return an orgy of irrelevant sites.

  • Why pay Google for an ad when you can get free publicity by deliberately submitting an ad that you know they won't run, then submitting a frivolous lawsuit.

  • Maybe it's time that the government step in and force Google to play fair []. You know, for the good of society, they should be made to share with everyone. That's what Google seems to want for other companies [], so what's good for them is good for Google, isn't it?

  • There is an important missing piece to this story. What was the ad that Google refused to run? I actually searched to see if I could find the ad that Google rejected, but was unable to find it. Without knowing the content of the ad that Google rejected it is impossible to know if Google was behaving in an acceptable manner or not. The story as told reflects badly on Google, but it is told exclusively from the perspective of the Sex Party. Yes, we are given a quote from a Google email where they say that "it
  • Google banned all firearm related products from Google Shopping not two weeks ago. Some of you are indulging an idealized `do no evil' Google from 2001. Google censors whatever it's told to and whatever it doesn't like whenever it wants. There may be some vestige of reluctance to censor within Google, but it's not bothering anyone.

"You must have an IQ of at least half a million." -- Popeye