According to Search Engine Land, Google has fully rolled out a minor change to their search pages. The ads you are accustomed to seeing on the right side of the screen used to be labeled "Sponsored Links". Now Google has decided to just call them what they are : Ads. It seems that all users are seeing AdWords content listed as ads.
Some users were seeing this a few weeks ago, but now all English language domains have been changed over. Interestingly, Gmail ads are still showing as Sponsored Links. The reason for the change is unclear. It's possible Google needed to keep the ads clearly labeled to avoid confusion with the new Places integration. Do you think AdWords will be any less effective being called out as ads?