Evaluating a link to a site that is brand new and has ads on it makes me look at it harder. How aggressive are they with the advertising and how dedicated are they to the content?
It'd be pretty hard to do that if the ads weren't there, which is one good reason why they should be.
My point is about putting the focus on the content so the site is fairly evaluated.
Fine. On that point my position is that if the content is so weak that a few ads overpower it, the site may not be ready to go live anyhow, and it sure isn't ready to be out looking for links from credible sites.
This has nothing to do with sliding under a policy of not linking to sites with commercial content. I don't understand why you keep arguing that point because it's not a point I'm making or defending.
I'll stand by this ...
If you plan to put ads on a site but don't because you want other webmasters to think it's an ad free site, that's deceptive.
Apparently we agree on that, to some degree.
I understand and agree with your point. However I'm making a different point.
I see it as the two inseparable sides of the same coin.