What is going on?
Dear fellow Koders,
As you might have noticed, it has been a while since our last major update to Kodular Creator, Kodular 1.3B, and a while longer since we last bumped the version name, Kodular Draco.
And we think we owe you an explanation for this.
Some of you may already have some information about what we are going to tell, as “Google” indexed some results about this and some people found it.
Google has terminated our Google AdSense account.
Yes, that sentence is a summary about everything that has been happening internally. It may be shocking, and we will try to explain everything so that you can understand it.
We have been working all these months to get our account back and pay our servers.
In January 2019, we got an automated email from Google saying that our AdSense account has been terminated because our website contains pornographic/nudism/hentai content.
As you can know, we don’t have any such content in any of our sites (you can check any part of the website(s) and you won’t find any such content). Besides, Kodular helps schools teach programming, so naturally, there isn’t any such content.
Why is this a problem?
Well, our main (and, in fact, the only) way of revenue to support the servers was from the commission we were taking from Admob components in our users’ apps. And this was allowed by Admob, as when we launched Kodular, we contacted them asking if there was going to be any kind of issue, and they said everything was fine.
But now it seems it wasn’t.
And, without the AdSense account, we now had no revenue to support the server, as Admob requires an active AdSense account to work with.
Consequence: it is (was) impossible to maintain a free platform which costs thousands of euros each month in servers.
What has Google said about this?
None of the “official” contact attempts with Google gave result. And believe me, we tried hundreds of them: emails, phone, forms, forum etc.
However, we had the luck that a Google AdSense Monetization Specialist contacted us personally, and she said that some apps made with Kodular were displaying prohibited content, and that was the real reason of our suspension.
She [the Google employee] said that we have to ensure that all apps follow their policies to get our account back. So, we started to work on some ways to solve the issue.
We first launched an automatic content detector, to prevent apps with invalid content from displaying Admob ads. We had to wait for nearly two months, and then she said it was not enough, that non-complaint apps could still be created.
So, we finally developed an approval system, which requires all apps to be manually approved by us to display ads. This system guaranteed a 100% of accuracy, as we manually check the content of each app.
However, after implementing it, we haven’t heard back since then (27th March).
What is going to happen with Kodular?
We started exploring alternate ways to keep the Kodular up and running and after long thoughts and discussions, we decided to implement the following system to keep the platform free.
With Kodular 1.3C we have added a new way to take commissions again. We have partnered with other ad platforms in order to take commissions from their networks.
This allows us to place their ads with our identifiers when we have to take commission from Admob. So, you might sometimes see other ad networks when using Interstitials. When that happens is because we are getting paid with ads.
Dear Koders, We have had problems with our Admob account because some of our Koders have released not-complaint apps…community.kodular.io
Your app will have to be approved by us using the Ads Approval Form in order to show ads when not installing from Play Store, to comply with monetization policies.
We know this might be sound complex a bit, but don’t worry about it as your account will never get suspended for that reason, as we have the official support from those ad networks. And mediation is allowed by all ad network providers.
You can have a detailed explanation of this new system here.
This will allow us to keep the platform running for free.
We hope that the immese support you all have been will continue.
We know you like Kodular, and we know how much you enjoy using it.
Think it like this: without Kodular you might not be earning nothing. We think it is fair to get part of those earnings, as they are made with Kodular.
But don’t worry. This is just a temporary solution. Kodular Creator 1.4 E… will improve this system in several ways, and it will significantly lower down commission fees. At this moment commission vary from a basic 10% up to a 20%, depending on the ad network (tip: Unity and StartApp have the lower ones).
Plus, it will add several new features, it will be our biggest release since Andromeda. ProKoders know about some of them, but there is a bigger one which is still secret, which can bring a revolution to App Inventor.
Feel free to ask in our community any question(s) you might have about this.
We will try to be as transparent as possible, explaining as best as we can!