Google bans cryptocurrency ads

Google, the world's largest online-advertising seller, announced today that it will ban all ads for cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings starting in June.

As of March 13th, however, Google published "Financial Services: New restricted financial products policy (June 2018), announcing it "will update the Financial service's policy to restrict the advertisement of" cryptocurrencies and related content".

Users aiming to purchase Google Ads of any sort will no longer be allowed buys for cryptocurrency or related content.

Google is looking to improve the overall ad experience for internet users, giving various examples of how it punished deceptive content online a year ago, and what it plans to do to improve the ad experience. In a blog post, Product Management Director Rob Leathern said, "There are many companies who are advertising binary options, ICOs and cryptocurrencies that are not now operating in good faith". Google did not indicate how much money it would be losing because of the ban, but those ad networks such as MediaNet that continue to run crypto ads will probably be big beneficiaries, unless of course they also follow suit, either voluntarily or through compliance with future regulatory requirements.

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Google's move to ban crypto-currency-related ads is part of what Spencer described as a broader crackdown on bad actors in the advertising realm.

Worth mentioning, Facebook too had banned all bitcoin and related ads on its platform in January itself.

"Admittedly, one could make the same argument about gold, but gold has been widely accepted by humankind as a thing of value for more than two-and-a-half thousand years-compared to less than a decade for bitcoin".

Google will update its Financial services policy to restrict ads for not only cryptocurrencies, but also for rolling spot forex, financial spread betting, binary options and synonymous products, and contracts for difference. The company also says that it blocked almost 90,000 websites and 700,000 mobile apps "for policy violations". It is estimated to bring in more than $40bn in ad revenues over the course of 2018, nearly half the entire global $94bn market, beating Facebook, which earns $22bn, into second place. Google also introduced technology that enables it to remove Google ads from individual pages on a website that violate its policies. The Indian government in December 2017 had also cautioned investors to be wary of virtual currencies like Bitcoin, calling them "Ponzi schemes with no legal tender and protection".


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