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China issues new online advertising rules

's State Administration for Industry and Commerceissued new regulations on online advertising, The Wall Street Journal reported July 8.

The rulesgive a broad definition of online and electronic advertising to include emailads, paid-search results, and embedded links, images or videos promotingservices or goods. Search engine firms have been required to limit ad resultsto 30% of each results page, with all ads clearly identified in the searchresults.

Theregulations also prohibit online ads for prescription drugs, while ads formedical supplies, veterinary medicine, pesticides and other health productswill need to secure prior government approval.

Thenew rules were reportedly triggered by public outrage over the death in Aprilof a college student who used a treatment advertised on 's platform.

ZhangGuohua, an official from the Chinese regulator, said the rules apply to socialnetworking sites and all other online platforms, and will be revised in linewith industry changes. The new regulations take effect in September, accordingto the report.