Google Hits Snag in Monetizing Orkut

Google removed ads from its Orkut social networking service in August after facing complaints filed with a Brazilian advertising body, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Brazilian nonprofit group SaferNet lodged a complaint alleging that Orkut contains child pornography and other illegal content on some users' pages. Google removes such content when it's found

According to Google, the ads were part of a test, and only appeared on only 1% of Orkut pages. A Google executive in Brazil, Alexandre Hohagen, told the WSJ that the company was working closely with Brazilian authorities, and future plans for ads on Orkut were unclear.

Lack of control over the content ads appear near has been an issue for advertisers, especially big-brand owners. Add to that the reported poor performanceof ads, along with the risk of offending the core audience by disrupting their user experience, and it makes one wonder how sites like Facebook will ever be "the next Google," or why folks like Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer think the hype around social networks is going to die down.

About the author

Kevin Newcomb joined ClickZ in August 2004, covering search marketing and other online marketing topics. He has been reporting on web-based businesses since 2000.

Before the bubble burst, Kevin was a marketing manager for an online computer reseller, handling copywriting, e-mail marketing, search marketing and running the affiliate program.

With a combination of real-world marketing experience and years of business journalism, Kevin brings to ClickZ a unique ability to deliver news and training materials that help online marketers do their jobs better.