It's not clear how popular Chinese television...

It's not clear how popular Chinese television shows are, but the public loves the commercials, according to a recent survey. A survey of Beijing residents found that 96.1% enjoy watching TV ads for just about any product, from cosmetics and medicines to appliances and books, the official Xinhua News Agency said.

The only ads that don't get watched closely are those for industrial products, according to the survey by the China Central Television Station and the Mass Media Research Institute of People's University in Beijing. Details of how the poll was conducted were not reported.

Advertising was long banned in China as capitalist, but the ban was lifted in 1979 and TV ads have become paeans to the happiness that comes with material acquisition. The ads often feature heavily made-up, well-dressed young women smiling gently as they use their new copy machine or drink their imported coffee.

Some ads push to the limits of what is permissible under China's still-puritan social ethic. One of the most daring shows half a dozen young women in tight pants and high heels gyrating under strobe lights and tossing their hair to promote hair-care products.

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