While there’s nothing intrinsically wrong with the practice, I feel that it sets up expectations that the blogger or website owner will have to deliver on once the visitor lands on your page.
If you can keep your readers happy, you’ve laid the foundation for a successful and low cost (possibly free) traffic generation model.
The sad reality is that more than 90% of the sites using such techniques have average (and usually sub-standard) poor content.
At best, this is gimmicky in my opinion and best used for one-off, throwaway adsense-oriented traffic.
But if you’re a serious Internet Marketer in this for the long haul, you’d do much better to build your brand, which means either using your photograph, or an image which represents your online presence.
Credibility and reputation are essential to your long term success, and being consistent in your online branding build rapport with your visitors. Consistent branding will bring you intangible returns in the way of joint ventures which will net you much more than merely driving traffic to an adsense-optimized site.
I don’t know about you, but it would be difficult to take some aspiring marketer who uses a Hooters girl as his icon, seriously, much less consider a joint venture.