Since September 1, 2016 it is in force the new Interim Measures on Management of Internet Advertising. The Measures strengthen control and regulation on internet Advertising. We recently met Shanghai AIC officers from the Advertising Supervision Department to discuss the newly effective Measures and herein find a brief report.

This is the first piece of legislation providing specific regulation of online advertising. In facts the Measures follows several accidents and discussions. Among all we recall Baidu being accused of promoting gambling sites in the night and the very controversial accident of Wei Ze Xi, a young man who bought a cancer treatment highly recommended by some online advertisement that eventually turned out to be ineffective.

The Measures expressly include in the definition of online advertisement sponsored/paid search results, advertising posted on social networks, and advertising in linked pages. The Measures requires that all such content shall be clearly highlighted as “advertising”. As further consequence is that all these contents – and it is clear now - will be subject to the general provisions of 2015 Advertising Law.

Publishers are supposed to have technological control over the content and release of such advertising. They are responsible for monitoring the third party advertisements they post and can be liable for its content.

Consent by receivers shall be required before sending any advertising content through email. And receivers shall be given tools to allow them not to receive any such further email.