On Digtal Point Forums user korzon starts a thread called "using pictures next to Adsense ads".
Seems like most arcade games use some variation of pictures next to google ads to improve CTR and reportedly, it works great. The question is, is this OK with Google? Would you recommend using this tactic?
Jenstar was the first authority figure to chime in with:
I went directly to Google to ask about images above/beside ad units, and if the images could be confused as being part of the ad, you need a border between the two.
So the questions is asked and answered right? Well, in my opinion, there is a VERY fine line between blending ads into your site and flat out tricking people.
Check out this See the top listing on this adult theme site? Besides having Adsense on a adult theme site is this a good example of blending in or tricking?
The advice I give to anyone who asks me if there site is "pushing it to far" when it comes to blending techniques is just to email google and have them tell you. They will respond with a yes or no and then you have your official response.
Of course... what fun is that =P
Other related entries on blending with ads: