Who needs those stinky old ads? Maybe not the cryptocurrency industry. It seems the crypto advertisers (ICOs, blockchain startups, etc) must have come down with a significant case of the ‘cooties’ the past few months as Facebook, Google, Twitter, etc., all decided to ban cryptocurrency advertising. In a VERY ironic twist, Facebook kicked off the ban in January to get away from “misleading or deceptive practices frequently associated with crypto ads”. FACEBOOK?? DECEPTIVE PRACTICES? Wow! Now that’s really a spin. But, hey, maybe its a good thing. Just like when a super hot cool new club opens in a secret location where only the coolest chic people flock, it becomes more exclusive and more valuable to be on the inside. Ya know, the more you can’t have something the more you want it. Cutting cryptocurrency advertising will certainly lower the hype. Guess those big advertising platforms could be afraid of liability by running crypto ads, OR they already have enough on their hands with government regulators.
(Bill Taylor/Managing Editor)
“Cryptocurrency startup founders who want to advertise their new companies can no longer rely on the internet’s largest platforms to help spread their message. In January, Facebook announced it was banning ads that are “frequently associated with misleading or deceptive practices” including initial coin offerings and cryptocurrencies. Other platforms quickly followed suit; now, nearly all of the web’s most trafficked sites forbid cryptocurrency advertising. But entrepreneurs and researchers committed to the future of blockchain tech largely say they’re getting along just fine—and that the ban might even be a good thing.
In March, Google also announced a cryptocurrency crackdown that will go into effect in June across all of its platforms. Snap, Twitter, and MailChimp soon followed. And Reddit has been banning cryptocurrency ads since 2016. At this point, if you’re interested in advertising a cryptocurrency startup, your best bet might be word of mouth.
Advertising platforms like Google and Facebook have good reason to want to ban ads for cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings, opportunities for investors to buy the tokens that power a blockchain application at a lower, early-bird price. ICOs and other cryptocurrency investment schemes are largely unregulated, and have repeatedly attracted scammers interested in ripping off unsuspecting investors. While many blockchain startups are legitimately trying to build a business using the new technology, some simply want to make a buck off the hype that comes with it.
The Securities and Exchange Commission has also indicated that many token sales are likely securities and need to be registered with the agency. By blanket banning them, advertising platforms shield themselves from the risk of promoting potentially illegal investment opportunities. On Monday for example, the SEC filed a complaint against the founders of Centra Tech Inc., a celebrity-endorsed blockchain startup, for orchestrating a fraudulent ICO. Criminal authorities separately charged and arrested the two men behind the company…”