Last night the AdSense Blog announced two changes to the referral ad program just for referring people to the AdSense product (not AdWords, not Google Checkout, etc.).
Here is a sample live AdSense Referral Ad for the AdSense product:
Those changes are two fold:
(1) The pricing structure will change for publishers based in North America, Latin America, or Japan. You will be getting paid less. In the old pricing structure, you would earn $5 if the AdSense publisher you referred made $5 within 180 days, plus if that publisher made $100 within 180 days you get $250 plus if you referred 25 people who make $100 within a 180 days, you get a bonus of $2,000.
Now? You get a $100 if you refer someone who makes a $100 within a 180 days.
(2) If you are outside of North America, Latin America, and Japan you get paid zero, nothing for referring people to the AdSense product. Nothing.
AdSense ends off by saying:
We appreciate your support of this referral product, and hope it won't cause you any inconvenience.
Any inconvenience? Give me a break! I personally don't make money off the AdSense referral product but if people do, it seems insulting to take back what was once given. Imagine telling your sales force, you know that 40% commission we agreed on a couple years ago? Well, I got to cut it down to 10%. Oh, and you from India, your fired. Sorry for any inconvenience but thank you for your support!
As you can imagine, the forum discussion is a bit overwhelming in some forums.