I have received an official ruling from Google about my perfectly blended AdSense ads. They don’t seem very happy about it. However, they’re not going to ban me for it.
While reviewing your account, we noticed that you are currently displaying Google ads in a manner that is not compliant with our policies. For instance, we found violations of AdSense policies on pages such as http://www.johnchow.com/index.php/how-to-perfectly-blend-google-adsense-ads/.
Publishers are not permitted to display Google ads in a manner that may mislead users, causing them to mistake Google ads for site content. Additionally, publishers may not label the Google ads with text other than “sponsored links” or “advertisements.”
We also ask that you do not encourage other publishers to violate our program policies.
Please make any necessary changes to your web pages in the next 72 hours. Once you update your site, we will automatically detect the changes and ad serving will not be affected. If you choose not to make the changes to your account within the next three days, your account will remain active but you will no longer be able to display ads on the site. Please note, however, that we may disable your account if further violations are found in the future.
Thank you for your cooperation.
The Google AdSense Team
Well, that ends the experiment. What Google is saying in the above email is publishers are allowed to perfectly match the font properties of the Google ads. However, presenting the ad the way I did could have people mistaking the ad for site content. Therefore, while Google’s optimization page encourages you to blend your ads to make them look like part of the site content, you can only take it so far.
When in doubt about your ad integration, you should always email Google for a ruling. They will not ban you for doing so. However, they may if someone reports you! Better safe than sorry, right?
In the short time that the 234 AdSense ad was on the blog, its performance really wasn’t that great. The eCPM worked out to just 59 cents. The ad has since been removed to bring the blog back into compliance with the Google TOS.