Business 14 March 2018

Gerald Fenech

Google joins Facebook in banning cryptocurrency ads

As if the situation was not bad enough for cryptocurrencies with problems regarding scams, excessive regulation and a wholesale crash in prices, more bad news proliferated on Tuesday.

This came in the stark announcement by tech giant Google that it would be banning all advertising for cryptocurrencies on its sites starting June. Although this policy might be reviewed, it is another stark warning that the cryptocurrency market continues to face severe challenges to recover from its slump after prices spiked in December 2017.

This restriction for advertising applies not just to Google but also to platforms like YouTube as well as other third party advertising sites which the internet giant sells considerable advertising space. This is another worrying development following the announcement by Facebook that it would also ban all cryptocurrency advertising in order to restrict the number of misleading promotions that were taking storm at that time especially with regards to initial coin offerings (ICOs). Undoubtedly the bad press regarding the huge number of ICO scams contributed to this decision. This development is quite unfortunate for investors who have gone into the market at extremely high prices and who are staring at less than half of their investment at current prices.

There was no explanation from Google on why this decision was taken. The ban applies to all content that relates to cryptocurrencies, ICOs, cryptocurrency exchanges, wallets and trading advice. This will definitely have a huge effect on the way the cryptocurrency market is promoted although the scarcity of such advertising might be beneficial in that it will create scarcity for advice with already experienced players now in the market.

Cryptocurrencies were off to a bad start this 2018, with the total market cap halving after reaching a peak of $810 billion in early December. This peak corresponded with a significant increase in advertising push all across the internet, which has now fallen significantly. In fact, searches for Bitcoin and cryptocurrency on Google have gone down by more than 80% in the past months from their highs in December 2017.

This new ban will undoubtedly have a considerable effect on the number of Initial Coin Offerings, which are more than likely, scams. It could have a positive effect in that it cleans out the market from potentially rogue offerings that have given the nascent industry a very bad name.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (SegWit) chain are referenced as BTC coins; tokens on the Bitcoin Cash ABC chain are referenced as BCH, BCH-ABC or BAB coins.

Bitcoin Satoshi Vision (BSV) is today the only Bitcoin project that follows the original Satoshi Nakamoto whitepaper, and that follows the original Satoshi protocol and design. BSV is the only public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin and will massively scale to become the world’s new money and enterprise blockchain.

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