In an effort to protect consumers, Google has announced a new policy for AdWords relating to cryptocurrency. Basically, cryptocurrency ads are over.
In an update to its Financial Services ad policy, Google has stated its intent to disallow ads for pretty much anything related to cryptocurrencies:
In addition, ads for the following will no longer be allowed to serve:
- Binary options and synonymous products
- Cryptocurrencies and related content (including but not limited to initial coin offerings, cryptocurrency exchanges, cryptocurrency wallets, and cryptocurrency trading advice)
The restrictions include everything from exchanges for well known cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum, to information about obscure new ones coming from companies of all kinds (even Kodak!).
This new policy is likely pushback from recent events like the implosion of scams like Bitconnect, a recent Last Week Tonight segment and cryptocurrency mining ads embedded in YouTube ads, as well as the simple volatility of these assets and the havoc they can wreak in uneducated hands.
In a comment to CNBC, Scott Spencer, director of sustainable ads for Google, stated:
We don’t have a crystal ball to know where the future is going to go with cryptocurrencies, but we’ve seen enough consumer harm or potential for consumer harm that it’s an area that we want to approach with extreme caution.
These changes will go live in June, likely to give current advertisers a grace period.