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May 01, 2006

Major currency converting error for Google AdSense payments

Many publishers are reporting currency exchange errors in their accounts this month made by Google AdSense flipping the currency exchange rates when doing calculations for March earnings payments (sent at the end of April). This error seems to be affecting many currencies, not just a single currency, making this an extremely significant error by AdSense.

Some publishers are affected more than others in how the exchange rate was reversed. Canadians, for example, had theirs affected when AdSense calculated 0.884 CDN = 1 US instead of 1 CDN = 0.884 US. This would result in publishers receiving $88.40 CDN instead of the expected $112.70 CDN for every $100 earned, resulting in a loss of $24.30 CDN for each $100 US earned. In Sweden, the resulting exchange rate mixup resulted in publishers receiving only 2% of their earnings.

Interesting to note, however, is that no one has reported receiving payments where the exchange rate was reversed to their advantage, meaning they received more money than they were supposed to. Perhaps they are keeping it low key, but not a single person has reported accidentily receiving more, although the forums are filled with those who received far less.

How could such an error have been made by the AdSense Team? I have no idea how such a significant error could have been made by AdSense with all the control checks that should be in place. There is the possibility it could be an error made by the bank, but because the amount is showing up incorrectly in the control panel, it is more likely it is an error with in AdSense (and I sure wouldn't like to be the person on the AdSense Team who made that error!)

AdSense is aware of the situation, and those affected publishers have received this notification:

Hello,

We wish to inform you that the exchange rate used for your
April payment was incorrect. We're working hard to
investigate this error and will update you once we have
additional details on how we intend to resolve the issue.

If you normally receive communication for us in a
language other than English, we will provide additional
information in your preferred language next week.

We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your
patience.

Sincerely,

The Google AdSense Team

I do not know how AdSense plans to rectify the situation, however in my eyes, the only correct solution is to immediately instigate payments to affected publishers for the loss created when the exchange rates were flipped. Last October, payment errors caused by AdSense error were initially not going to be corrected until payments was sent the following month, although they did reverse that decision a few days later. In this case though, many more publishers seem to be affected by this exchange rate error, and I can only imagine the outcry that would occur if AdSense defers the additional payments owing until the payment issued at the end of May. Making a second payment as soon as possible is the only correct thing to do. And just to note, I am not an affected publishers (I receive my payments in US funds), so my feelings on how AdSense should handle this is not being affected because I was shorted on my payment ;)

Hopefully there will be resolution to this situation shortly.

Posted by Jenstar at May 1, 2006 05:08 AM

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Comments

In Denmark we have got approx 38 times less than we should. I totally agree, Jen, they need issue a new payment on the difference they owe us ASAP - and actually, I think they will :)

Posted by: Mikkel deMib Svendsen at May 1, 2006 07:55 AM

Just as a note.. payment from Google went in today here in the UK exactly at the amount expected. Seems they were smart enough not to make the reverse mistake and give us more pounds that we should have got ;-) (since a ÂŁ is worth more than a dollar, in theory that should have happened).

Posted by: Peter Cooper at May 1, 2006 08:00 AM

I AM SO PISSED OFF. WHAT ARE THEY PLANNING ON DOING NOW?

Posted by: vex at May 1, 2006 10:51 AM

I got the exact expected amount, so I guess Dutch currency has been treated correctly.

Posted by: katinka hesselink at May 1, 2006 10:59 AM

I am still awaiting my first payment. My mistake is still have Check - Standard Delivery, so it takes time till I know how the conversion $-euro is handled by google.

but katinka's post gives me hope.

Posted by: simon at May 2, 2006 01:01 AM

fakkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk sietrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr wrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr :-((((((((((((((((((((((

Posted by: manq at May 2, 2006 03:12 AM

Today Google adding to the errors by reporting EFT transfer errors on all accounts I have had chance to look at - including accounts that have previously had perfect bank transfers. What is going on with AdSense? FIRE THAT PROGRAMMER NOW!!

Posted by: Mikkel deMib Svendsen at May 2, 2006 06:19 AM

In Poland we received about 10% of the tolal amount we should receive :-(

Posted by: zaq at May 2, 2006 07:43 AM

OK, so we checked with the bank and there IS no errors in our end. As it turned out, this is just yet another way for Google to delay payments. This is totally unacceptable and as close to fraud as can be. Shame on Google for not handling this in a professional manner.

Posted by: Mikkel deMib Svendsen at May 3, 2006 06:19 AM