Impact to my blog of upcoming EEA and UK privacy guidelines

I got notified this week that as part of compliance with EEA and UK guidelines, my blog is required to comply with new requirements to be able to continue to place Google AdSense ads on this website.

I have no way to control who from EEA and UK visits my blog, or where they come from to do it. They could be using vpn services from other countries also for all I know. I don't require user registration, and I don't personally capture any personal data.

I reviewed the very detailed legal requirements, and (amongst many other things) this requires me to be registered as a company to be able to comply with this privacy requirement. 

I also have to produce a detailed personally legally enforceable GDPR privacy page and cookie page linked to the website consent notification, to cover exactly what data I collect, and what I do with the data. I don't personally do anything with it - I just blog about computers and trains. 

That tracking is all AdSense, and they are not helping personal bloggers (who are not companies) to comply with this - we have to generate our own legal statements before we can enable GDPR compliant functionality for our blogs.

I know a lot of people enable AdSense on their personal blogs, and forum websites often do this also. I am not sure how other personal bloggers who use AdSense (and are not registered as companies) are dealing with this. I can only say how I am going to.

I guess if other blogger websites make significant money from their websites, they would likely already have a legal entity for this and it is a simple extension to comply with this.

I don't aim to make money from collecting people's data, I don't do it myself at all. There is just a tiny little bit of revenue comes to me from AdSense who automatically place ads on my blog, and I get income if readers see an ad of interest to them and click on it. 

I assume Google is collecting cookie data from my reader's computers and smart devices for that revenue to happen, but I don't do any of that myself and have no idea how that works. I just tick the box in blogger to enable it. And yet I am being held legally responsible for it under these new guidelines.

Google (as host of all blogger websites), is neatly washing their hands of the legal obligation that AdSense creates for them by forcing the website owners to take full legal responsibility for how Google chooses to use the data they collect from website readers like yourself. 

Full disclosure - I have received less than $200 over the past 5 years of enabling ads via AdSense on this website. 

It would cost me more than that just to register a legal Australian entity and related legal paperwork to comply with these requirements. It is not worth it.

This Adsense revenue is the only revenue I got for all the work I do on this site over the last 10 years, and it was tiny anyway compared to what Google gets from selling the advert space to others. 

Thanks Google, for nothing. 

To be honest the tiny revenue is not worth the cost, legal responsibility,  and the considerable work to comply. 

This situation sucks for personal bloggers. 

That said, I understand the reasons why people want to have their data protected and their rights to prevent data being used in ways they don't agree with. 

I fully respect that right, but I am unable to comply with the requirements Google set down as I don't actually make enough money from this website to cover the cost of their mandated compliance.

So, I have decided to remove AdSense and it's ugly intrusive ads from my blog from today.

For your information, removing the ads from my website makes no difference to Google really, since they will continue to track your usage via cookies everywhere you visit online using Google Search, and continue to use adsense and other methods to place tracked ads on other social media you frequent, that also track you, and they all sell on your personal data to anyone willing to bid for it. They will continue to get richer, no problem for them at all.

This change just means I no longer get any money for my efforts to create content for you all to enjoy. On the positive side for you as the reader, from today my website will now be ad-free for you all.