Ministry Ponders Guidelines For Web Advertisement

Refer to 'Malaysia Technology News'

Google has been working hard in Malaysia to create more local presence and with the recent Get Malaysian Business Online initiative, it is teaming up with government to literally encourage more people to do business online, to have more web presence and to advertise more online.

Google is no new comer to the advertising industry, its Adsense platform literally generated much love-and-hate relationship with conventional players in the advertising arena. In US and Europe, some media companies labeled Google as parasite for its Google news which aggregated news content from others and host advertisements.

The Adsense platform was explosive and disruptive, it achieved its peak during the period of year 2005 to 2006 when Google achieved all time surplus corporate profit and its share 'free floated' highest since its IPO.

On August 19, 2004 the number of shares outstanding was 172.85 million while the "free float" was 19.60 million (which makes 89% held by insiders). In January 2005 the number of shares outstanding was up 100 million to 273.42 million, 53% of that was held by insiders, which made the float 127.70 million (up 110 million shares from the first trading day).

During those periods, Adsense was literally new-kid-on-the-block, it offers equal opportunity to everybody to advertise with lowest entry cost and DIY. Everybody was able to advertise something without going through the hassle of agencies and middlemen.

That was then. Now Google is officially in Malaysia and apparently it is spearheading the Malaysia's Internet industry.

For this, personally I take it positively. For one thing, with Google's mission of net neutrality and non-censorship stance, it is a good thing for Malaysia's Internet. I can rest better thinking that Google will be the last person to fight for Internet freedom in Malaysia heavy rooted with conventional political ideas.

Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Ministry is playing along, proposing guidelines to protect consumers from errant advertisers. This is actually better for Google because of its local presence and collaboration with the Government offers Google first-hand information to compete and adapt faster. Besides that, it will also save Google the trouble of being sued for hosting errant advertisements.

Google recently announced that The Internet contributed 4.1% to Malaysia's GDP in 2010.