Update February 25th, 1:52 PM: The ads have now returned. A statement attributed to Google says "Our Policy Team has taken another look at this and decided to reinstate ad serving to [9to5Google]. No further action is needed."
After five years of continuous operation, Google has reportedly decided that Google-focused tech site 9to5Google is violating trademark by using its name. In the meantime, Google has barred the site from using its AdSense network — through which 9to5Google says it makes "well into six figures a month" — and has advised 9to5Google to source ads from third-party operators.
A post on 9to5Google describes the situation when, at around noon today, the site's ads ceased to function. After contacting Google's ad department about the problem, 9to5Google was informed by a representative in Google's ad team that the legal trademark team had made its decision, "even though you have been operating the site for many years and have even attended several Google hosted events without anyone bringing up an issue."
After five years of operation Google has now decided it's a trademark violation
"We recognize that the situation is both shocking and frustrating and we've advocated on your behalf as much as we can," the email from the ad team representative reads. "Since they will not grant us an appeal, we want to provide you with information for how you may legally use our trademark and if the conditions are reasonable, for you to submit a request." 9to5Google says it does intend to appeal the decision, but that there's a "big chance" it will have to change its name, soliciting potential alternatives in the post's comment thread.
The Verge has contacted Google for comment on the matter