The following are instructions for disabling the AIM advertisements.
Use Notepad to open the aim.odl file. Screen down until you find two sections that have 'advert' followed by required. Remove 'required' in both lines and then save the file.
Rename or delete the file advert.ocm. The next time you sign on you will not have to look at the AIM ads at the top of the IM client.
This has been tested with the AOL AIM client
downloaded 12 Feb 2002.