Video games in China have long had a bad rep, so it’s no wonder that the newest revision to commercial advertising regulations in China features video games. The only problem with these new regulations: they’re targeting something that, at this time, doesn’t really exist.
Posted on the State Council’s legal affairs website last week, the new proposed revisions for advertising are directed towards video games and children. The said proposals aim to remove and prevent video game advertising in textbooks, school buses, school uniforms and programming geared towards children from primary school to high school.
In regards to video game advertising on Chinese TV, unless someone has cable, there pretty much isn’t any. Most video game-related advertising in China is found, well, online.
Chinese television is heavily regulated, and children’s broadcasting only shows up on a few channels; either the official China Central Television Youth Channel or a dedicated children’s channel, like Beijing TV’s Kaku.
Ads on CCTV are heavily regulated and overall in line with the government’s wishes, and ads on other channels usually employ ads that favour whatever business their owners they are in. For example, Beijing Kaku airs ads about its retail toy stores and after-school cram learning programs.
In regards to Chinese text books and uniforms, the same can be said: there is no advertising other than the logos of the school. Chinese students, sadly, have the worst uniforms I’ve ever seen. Most public schools in China have their students wearing jumpsuits.
As for advertising on school buses, personally, I’ve never seen a school bus for Chinese public schools in China.
These new revised regulations haven’t gone into effect yet and are currently up for public consideration until the 24th of this month. The proposed regulations also include things that actually make sense, such as no advertising for tobacco products. Who knows, maybe these new proposed regulations are geared towards opening up of China’s console market?