Putting the X in Xtrant (Really Google?)

We launched a new campaign for Xtrant.  Nothing big, just testing some creative – pushed it up on the Google display network (and through our re-targeting service, so yes – if you’ve visited Xtrant you might see these ads other places, thank big brother.)

Get Your Workflow OUT of your Inbox<– Here’s what the ads look like...we happen to have this stock photo of a young woman in glasses holding her head as if fighting a migraine.  It’s eye catching, and shouts “frustration” (or simply being fed up).

But for some reason the Google team wouldn’t approve the ad.  I inquired via email – and they responded quickly (good on Google) and ultimately approved the ads, albeit in a “limited” capacity.

This is what Google’s ad tool has to say about “Approved (Limited)”

Approved (limited) ads can show, but there are limitations to where or when they can show.

Why this happens: This often happens if your ad contains trademarked terms, or if you’re advertising certain products that can’t be advertised in certain places or situations, like gambling, alcohol, or prescription drugs.

Example: If you have a trademarked term in your ad, your ad may get an Approved (limited) status, because it can only show in limited regions per our Trademark policy.

NOW we’re confused.  Certainly we own the trademarks on both Xtrant® and Productive Sharing® and we’ve licensed the stock photo fair and square.  So we sent another inquiry…

Google’s reply (also very nice, good customer service.)

Having looked into the campaign, I consulted our Specialist team to review the ads on priority and received their response few hours ago. The image ads have been marked as Approved limited for exposed skin in the ad’s image and in the website. As per our Ads policy, Sensitive areas: shoulders and area between the underarm line and kneecaps, not including kneecaps should not be visible.

Yes, one can see her shoulders and collar bone. And apparently this is too much for some of Google’s media partners.  Here are the details of all the things that can cause an ad to be limited – ours falls under “Human Form and Contact”

So, is Google being sexists to flag this image?  Is the image actually inappropriate and somehow we aren’t seeing it?  Is there a large Mennonite (love the Mennonites, by the way) population online that would be offended by this?

What do you think? Is this Xtrant ad rated X?