Placing Ads Next to Adsence Ads on your Blog
More and more blogs are trying to draw attention to their ads by placing graphics next to them, as shown in this sample from Google. The idea is to avoid misleading readers into thinking that the images are associated with the ads.
While Google makes it very clear that any images near an ad should not be associated with the ad by subject, they are not clear about random associations between ads and images, as created by plugins such as Adsense Beautifier. In fact, it is generally hard, if not impossible to know exactly what ads will appear on your site, and in which order, so how could you directly show a connection between your images and a particular ad?
Actually, I have noticed that a number of websites have stopped using Adsense Beautifier, and I think that is a shame. I find plain text ads boring and kind of ugly (but I have them on my site anyway!), and I think that if used tastefully and without the intent to mislead, images near ads can be a good thing, for readers and advertisers.
Google needs to provide more clear guidelines, specifically, what is acceptable. I know this is hard, but I think it is necessary. The alternative is that some people will find alternative methods for monetizing their websites, and others will give up on website revenue all together.
What is your opinion?