The National Communications Commission Temporary Directions for Commercial Product Placement in Television Programs
Published and enforced based on the delivery of Order 10148050910 on October 5th, 2012
To ensure the independent autonomy of editing and broadcasting production of television programs, and to protect audiences from being adversely influenced by surreptitious advertising, programs and advertisements shall be separated based on the existing regulations of broadcasting and television programs; in addition, Article 62-1 of the Budget Act stipulates that government institutions, public businesses, juridical persons with more than 50% capital from governmental donation, and enterprises with more than 50% capital invested by the government, shall not conduct in the way of product placement. With diverse commercial marketing strategies, however, there are an increasing number of logos, commodities, and commercial services adopting product placement in television programs as a marketing strategy. Advanced countries have noticed this issue. Both program quantity and quality may be significantly improved if programs are supported by external resources. Therefore, with the premise of existing laws that stipulate programs be separated from advertisements and forbid the advertising of governmental institutions, the commission shall permit the commercial product placement for programs except in the case of news or children’s programs. While adopting commercial product placement, however, television businesses shall not influence the independence of editing or encourage consumption directly, and they shall present the commercial product placement naturally. The information of advertisers shall be published to protect public rights, promising independent editing, and promoting the development of media industry. Prior to the revision of laws concerning commercial product placement in the Radio and Television Act and the Satellite Broadcasting Act, this regulation will serve as the explanatory principles for the ambiguous areas between programs and advertisements.
Moreover, when a television enterprise broadcasts a program containing commercial product placement of commodities, logos, or commercial services, it shall act in adherence to the contents of this regulation or related laws. It shall also commit to the spirit of self-discipline and pay attention to social perspectives in order not to over-embed the commodities, logos, or commercial services which may raise social disputes.
Commercial product placement means marketing or promotion for enterprises, groups, or individuals except for governmental institutions. Based on the non-gratuitous or rewarding relationship, specific concepts, commodities, logos, commercial services, or related information and characters are presented in programs in order to enhance the public’s recognition of the placed logos, commodities, or commercial services.
- Regulations on program broadcasting production
- General principles:
(1)Respect the independence and completeness of program editing
(2)Natural representation without over-emphasis on commodities, logos, or commercial services in programs
(3)Direct encouragement of buying specific commodities, logos, or commercial services is forbidden
(4)Reveal the embedded commodities, logos, or commercial services of the embedding enterprises, groups, or individuals
(5)The program time of containing product placement shall be less than 5% of the total program. The images of the embedded contents shall be less than a quarter of the screen.
- Special principles
(1)As designing the materials, representation, or contents of commodities, logos, or commercial services, neither the themes nor strategies may humiliate, ridicule, defame, discriminate, vilify, or harass human dignity, sexuality, race, religion, disability, body or age. Nor can they adopt irritating or abusing terms or contents.
(2)The materials, representation, or contents of commodities, logos, or commercial services shall not defame competitors or competing commodities with mocking language.
(3)The materials, representation, or contents of commodities, logos, or commercial services shall not be aimed at children younger than 12 and shall not
- Influence their physical or mental health
- Make use of children’s credulous or comparative mind and encourage them to buy commodities or commercial services
- Encourage children to ask parents to accept the suggestions of commodities or commercial services about the contents of programs
- Make use of children’s credulous mind and promote commodities or commercial services through participants in programs
- Make use of children’s lack of discernment and influence their consumptive behaviors through specific commodities or commercial services shown in programs
(4)The materials, representation, or contents of commodities, logos, or commercial services related to sex should not contain any obscene, erotic, and salacious words and voices or exaggerative actions
(5)The materials, representation, or contents of commodities, logos, or commercial services related to violence should not contain bloody, horrible, irritating, or scaring contents
(6)The product placement shall not make use of audiences’ trust on professional knowledge such as legislation and medicine and promote specific commodities, logos, or commercial services
(7)The materials, representation, or contents of commodities, logos, or commercial services should not inspire biases about issues such as health, safety, or environmental protection
- The principles of revealing: the timing and strategy of revealing shall be based on one of the following principles:
(1)At the end of programs, the revealed names or logos of embedded enterprises, groups, or individuals shall not contain advertising messages. The time for revealing the names or logos of all the embedded marketers shall not exceed 20 seconds. The revealing footage is not considered as advertising.
(2)After the end of programs, the names or logos of embedded enterprises, groups, or individuals are revealed.
- Programs forbidden from product placement
- News (programs) : all categories of news, in-depth news reports, news discussion (review), news programs (various forms of programs based on news but different from news reports), programs about the latest events, magazine shows, or other programs presenting essential facts
- Children programs: programs and channels made for pre-school and school children
- Forbidden or limited product placement categories of commodities, logos, or commercial services
- Forbidden product placement commodities, logos, or commercial services:
(4)Medicine that ought to be prescribed by doctors or designated by central competent health authorities
(5)Illegal commodities and services
(6)Other commodities forbidden from advertising by law
- Commodities whose advertising is limited by the law shall accord to the regulations of advertising as being embedded in programs.
- Commodities, logos, or commercial services considered unsuitable for embedding or over-embedding in programs by the competent authorities or the NCC.
- Conditions inapplicable to this regulation
It is not regarded as commercial product placement if commodities, logos, or commercial services appear in programs while the program broadcasters don’t benefit directly from the appearance of these commodities, logos, or commercial services and one of the following conditions exist.
- The presented commodities, logos, or commercial services are reasonable materials for the editing of programs.
- The programs are produced by foreign producers.
- Violation of this regulation
While adopting commercial product placement, if television programs violate these directions, penal measure will be taken in accordance with the principles of the separation of programs and advertisements and relevant laws.
- Revision of this regulation
After being published, these directions may at anytime be revised based on the results of enforcement.