Many months after mainland search engine rival Baidu.com launched their own ad service, Google.com this week announced their own foray into the Chinese-language search engine ads business. Google's AdWords service now covers 16 different languages.
In a letter addressed to current Google AdWords clients, the company said advertisers can now:
– Show ads to users in these countries and regions: People's Republic of China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and/or Singapore.
– Target ads to specific languages: simplified Chinese or traditional Chinese.
– View related online AdWords help content in simplified or traditional Chinese.
How this will be interpreted by the Chinese government has yet to be seen, and Google has not responded to questions about how it can easily filter potentially problematic political ads from appearing on mainland China computer users' terminals. Chinese regulations prohibit sensitive information from appearing on the Web.
In the past, Chinese Internet Service Providers have blocked access to Google.com for mainland netizens and currently Google's useful "cached page" feature is still unavailable to Chinese users.