Twitter to launch ad products in S. Korea this week

SEOUL, Oct. 30 (Yonhap) -- Twitter Inc. said it plans to launch "promoted tweets," its advertising products, in South Korea later this week to help local companies better approach potential customers.

The U.S. microblogging site on Tuesday posted on its website that its so-called Promoted Tweets, Promoted Accounts and Promoted Trends will debut in South Korea on Friday.

Twitter said Promoted Tweets are purchased by advertisers who want to reach a wider group of users and spark engagement from their existing followers.

In some instances, Promoted Tweets may be visible within a user's timeline if an advertiser has promoted a tweet that is relevant to that user, Twitter said, adding that users can easily dismiss it with a single click if desired.

Promoted Accounts is an advertising function that suggests Twitter accounts that people may find interesting to follow that they don't already.

Twitter said Promoted Trends allow users to see time-, context- and event-sensitive trends promoted by its advertising partners.

Still, the social networking site operator said its three ad products are clearly marked as "Promoted" to help users distinguish them from ordinary tweets, trends or other recommended accounts.

The planned launch of the Twitter ad products comes as South Korea's antitrust watchdog is pushing to revise a notification system to ensure that Internet portal sites distinguish search results from paid advertisements.

The Fair Trade Commission told the National Assembly earlier this month that it plans to revise the system within this year.

NAVER Corp., South Korea's largest Internet portal operator, currently places ads above their relevant search results, a practice consumer advocates claim could confuse users.

Repeated calls to NAVER seeking comment went unanswered.

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