Barely six months after a somewhat successful attempt at banning the proliferation of deceptive cryptocurrency advertising on the popular social media platform, Facebook has decided to lift some of these restrictions. The ban on cryptocurrency adverts by Facebook come officially on January 30 as part of a customer protection initiative that was meant specifically to keep naïve users of the platform from falling victim to crypto-related scams that have been rife in the online space.
“We’ve created a new policy that prohibits ads that promote financial products and services that are frequently associated with misleading or deceptive promotional practices, such as binary options, initial coin offerings, and cryptocurrency,” Facebook’s Product Management Director, Rob Leathern said at the time.
In the wake of Facebook’s crypto ad ban, other leading tech companies and advertisers such as Twitter, Google and Snapchat also joined in and implemented their own bans on cryptocurrency ads while citing the same reasons that Facebook did.
Did It Work?
Unfortunately, the ban did not turn out to be as effective as Facebook had hoped – crafty cryptocurrency advertisers were still able to sneak their promotions onto the social media platform by modifying or changing the spellings of common crypto-related keywords. However, it is worth mentioning that the ban did indeed see to a significant reduction in the number of crypto ads.
Unfortunately, again, while the ban helped in barring con artists from advertising, it also barred legitimate cryptocurrency business like Gemini and Coinbase from advertising their products. This is perhaps the main reason why Facebook has moved to loosen their restriction on cryptocurrency adverts albeit with a few conditions.
In an official blog post on Tuesday, June 19, Facebook’s Rob Leather once again made the announcement that the social media platform has loosened the restriction they laid out earlier this year in January but they have also included measures to ensure the allowed ads are from legitimate crypto businesses.
“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. So starting June 26, we’ll be updating our policy to allow ads that promote cryptocurrency and related content from pre-approved advertisers. But we’ll continue to prohibit ads that promote binary options and initial coin offerings,” the blog post reads.
Even though Facebook argues that it has loosened the ban to allow legitimate cryptocurrency business to keep advertising their services, there has been speculation stemming from rumors that the social media behemoth has been developing its own blockchain and could eventually launch its own digital currency.
In a way, this was confirmed by an announcement from Mark Zuckerberg which followed shortly after and stated that the company was looking into digital assets and the decentralized technologies behind them as a potential fix for some of Facebook’s problems.