Big news in the cryptocurrency world – Google is now allowing cryptocurrency advertising again. Or at least, it is displaying the advertisements of Coinbase.
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This development comes two days after the company’s adverts re-appeared on Facebook.
Background of bans
Earlier in 2018, cryptocurrency businesses suffered a blow when all of the biggest major Western websites banned their adverts. The first was Facebook, which announced its decision on the 30th of January. The explanation provided focused on the infestation of scammers setting up fake initial coin offerings to get people to send them investment money.
Google announced its decision to follow suit in March. This meant that when people entered a word like ‘Bitcoin’ into their search bar, only organic search results would appear, as opposed to paid adverts. Some considered this to be a great equaliser for the industry, and most agreed that something had to be done about the scams, but many others argued that a blanket ban on the whole industry was unfair.
The next dominos to fall were Twitter and Snapchat. Regarding Twitter, the ad ban hasn’t really had any effect on the embarrassing profusion of scam bots (look at the first six responses to Vitalik Buterin’s post below), but it was still considered a blow.
I do wish @elonmusk‘s first tweet about ethereum was about the tech rather than the twitter scambots……..@jack help us please? Or someone from the ETH community make a layer 2 scam filtering solution, please? https://t.co/biVRshZmne
— Vitalik “Not giving away ETH” Buterin (@VitalikButerin) July 9, 2018
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On the 26th of June, Facebook relaxed its rules for most aspects of the cryptocurrency industry. ICOs remained off the table. Product management director Rob Leathern said at the time: “In the last few months, we’ve looked at the best way to refine this policy — to allow some ads while also working to ensure that they’re safe…we’ll continue to prohibit ads that promote binary options and initial coin offerings.”
Brian Armstrong, CEO of Coinbase, triumphantly announced his re-admission to the Facebook world with a Twitter post on Friday last:
Facebook banned ads for crypto earlier this year. Proud to say we’ve now been whitelisted and are back introducing more people to an open financial system 👌 pic.twitter.com/JqF5ssAqqh
— Brian Armstrong (@brian_armstrong) July 20, 2018
It looks like Google doesn’t want to miss out.
John Lewis, CMO of tokentarget, said: “We are seeing rapid growth in 2018 and larger institutions getting into the space and it is of no surprise that as more regulators and countries jump on board to be a part of this sector advertising giants like Facebook and Google will not want to lose out.”
Coinbase is the US’ biggest cryptocurrency exchange. It has been seeing a downturn in business in the last few months, in tandem with the general condition of the market and doubtless somewhat effected by the ban on advertising. Nonetheless, it processes more than $100 million in trading daily, and as part of its effort to become entrenched in the financial system it recently set up a political action committee, which is an official way to raise money for political campaigns in the US. Being the first company to reappear on two major advertising platforms is likely to have a positive effect on its business.