Google primed to kick crypto-currencies off its advertising network

It's no secret that Google makes most of its money on advertising. Heck, some of our own ads are served through Google's networks. Due to the nature of the ad business, it behooves Google to accept as many advertisers as possible. Having said that, it's also important that the ad content Google is serving is trustworthy. That's likely the reason that come this June, Google will be banning advertisements for a range of financial products that includes all cryptocurrency-related offerings.

Specifically, Google is banning ads for "cryptocurrencies and related content, including but not limited to initial coin offerings, cryptocurrency exchanges, cryptocurrency wallets, and cryptocurrency trading advice." News of the ban comes from an update to Google's advertising policies, and the message offers no further justification or explanation for the change. It's possible that the company is concerned about folks getting fleeced and somehow holding Google responsible, or simply trying to maintain a standard of ad quality.

Other taboo topics covered by the announcement include binary options, contracts for difference, rolling spot forex, and financial spread betting. Advertisers may still be able to list advertisements for some of the products mentioned above as long as they licensed by the relevant financial services authorities in their respective regions. Google has a page that talks further about what advertisers of those products will need to do. There's no recourse for the crypto-coin crew, though—when the new policy goes into effect this June, they're banned from Google's advertising networks until further notice.

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    • ptsant
    • 2 years ago

    With current tech, in the places with the cheapest (and dirtiest) energy, like China the bitcoin is still profitable as long as it stays above $4k. Given that mining costs increase through competition and difficulty adjustment we will soon be at a point where it will not be very profitable to keep mining.

    • Anovoca
    • 2 years ago

    Great! Now I just need facebook to stop trying to sell me Crystal Reishi Master Healing classes.

      • Anonymous Coward
      • 2 years ago

      Judging by the adds I see, I have to conclude that either web advertising is fundamentally flawed, or people who spend money in response to adds are fools. But perhaps I need to spread around some more info about the types of products and services that I might actually spend money on.

        • Redocbew
        • 2 years ago

        I would say those two are not mutually exclusive.

    • ronch
    • 2 years ago

    Are lower graphics card prices on the horizon? 🙂

    • Zizy
    • 2 years ago

    I think that as long as crypto and ICOs are legal, Google and others shouldn’t be allowed to decide to ban them. With their influence on the internet, these moves have the power to destroy industries.

    That said, increased government regulation should happen and I can hardly wait for the day those dumb coins are worthless again. Barely any do anything useful at all.

    • GrimDanfango
    • 2 years ago

    While I’ve no doubt there’s a ton of borderline-fraudulent (and actually-fraudulent) activity going on around cryptocurrencies (as there tends to be around just about anything to do with large sums of money), I sort of get the feeling that something like this couldn’t be that simple… Google aren’t exactly a company of lofty scruples itself these days.

    Blockchain in general is such big news these days – not necessarily the individual currencies themselves, but the whole technology and the potential for society-shifting changes leading from it – that there’s a huge amount of effort being thrown into discrediting it and building as much bad sentiment as possible around it… while at the same time the world’s established banks try their best to work out how to repurpose it to be more in line with supporting their own efforts rather than undermining them.

    I can’t help but wonder if some of Google’s more influential business partners could be leaning on them to do this.

      • Klimax
      • 2 years ago

      Blockchain si not really interesting thing. It is just composed of single-linked list and a hash for each node.

      And there are not that many uses for it. So far best example I could think of is securing voting in elections. (For E-Voting)

    • Srsly_Bro
    • 2 years ago

    All biases aside, when a company with a dominant market share in platforms that share and provide information that billions use, its decisions are far more important to the public than a company with a minor market share. Companies with very large marketshares have a duty to the public to promote and protect free speech, within the defined guidelines that dictate free speech.

    I can understand the position of the below poster where Google is accused of limiting and censoring speech by restricting ads related to crypto currency.

    I disagree that Google is censoring speech in this instance, but we all should take notice when a company like Google or Microsoft make decisions that may in effect limit or censor speech.

    If you recall the EU took issue with Microsoft supplying internet explorer with Windows and other browsers were not an option. It effectively limited consumer choice as many people may not be aware of other browsers. Microsoft’s dominant position in effect limited consumer choice in browsers.

    We need to look beyond company and attempt to determine what effect, if any, the choices have on public interest.

    Now I’m going to bed.

    Sincerely yours,

    Srsly bro

      • cygnus1
      • 2 years ago

      As derFunkenstein pointed out, there is definitely a difference between blocking/censoring advertisements vs search results. For many similar financial products in their non-crypto currency versions, advertising them is already illegal. For a very good reason, the mere act of advertising said product implies some kind of guaranteed rate of return. That’s impossible to deliver and therefor the act of advertising these products must be fraudulent in nature. So I believe Google is simply following the spirit of the laws we already have governing traditional financial product advertising and applying it to crypto-currency products. This is not censorship, you can still search for and find these products. Blocking the ads is simply fraud prevention.

      • uartin
      • 2 years ago

      regarding eu and microsoft it was never about giving the consumer more freedom but about screwing money from Ms. ill add that if it was about our freedom then why would we be stuck with safari on ios.

    • Firestarter
    • 2 years ago

    I don’t blame them, any ads I’ve seen for crypto-related things were highly suspect to say the least

    • derFunkenstein
    • 2 years ago

    Being pretty anti-crypto myself, I think this is great news.

    Now I just need to kick back and wait a few minutes for someone to tell me why I’m wrong. Or just tell me that I’m wrong, more likely.

      • thedosbox
      • 2 years ago

      Come on, you can make money by heating your home! What’s not to like?

      [url<]https://techcrunch.com/2018/03/08/qarnot-unveils-a-cryptocurrency-heater-for-your-home/[/url<]

        • NovusBogus
        • 2 years ago

        Admittedly, this is the thing that almost got me to set up a small single GPU altcoin miner in November. Did I mention that I live in Minnesocold? 🙂

          • Klimax
          • 2 years ago

          That’s how I use couple of miners here. Nicely countered -15°C They also tried to heat main corridor. (We discovered too late that backdoors leaky too much heat.)

      • Takeshi7
      • 2 years ago

      You’re wrong because you’re supporting internet censorship.

        • derFunkenstein
        • 2 years ago

        What government does Google represent?

        Also, I figured it wouldn’t take long. 😉

          • Takeshi7
          • 2 years ago

          I never said government censorship. I just said censorship. corporate censorship is a thing, too.

            • derFunkenstein
            • 2 years ago

            There’s a difference between the right of being able to say what you want and the implied “right” you’ve created, the “right” to be heard. The latter is in scare quotes because it’s imaginary.

            • Takeshi7
            • 2 years ago

            I never said anything about rights. There can be censorship without the violation of rights.

            • derFunkenstein
            • 2 years ago

            so why are you upset?

            edit to say: if this was about search results excluding these things, I’d consider a different stance. Google isn’t trying to hide crypto from the internet. Google is refusing crypto money. Big difference.

            • Redocbew
            • 2 years ago

            Given the other things which Google is banning from the network it’d be nice to think that the reason for the change in terms is ideological, but I would bet it’s something more practical.

            • cygnus1
            • 2 years ago

            I believe it probably is ideological honestly. For many similar financial products in their non-crypto currency versions, advertising them is already illegal. And in the spirit of that law, Google appears to be banning advertisements for financial products that are of a dubious nature, and logically just by advertising are promising something that’s impossible to deliver, a guaranteed return on investment.

            • cygnus1
            • 2 years ago

            You speak as if you believe censorship is always an evil thing. It’s naive to think so and indicates a chaotic, anarchist, anti-community/society attitude. Self censoring can easily be a sign of maturity and self control, which makes that censorship a definite positive thing. If censorship violates someones actual rights, then it *can* be evil, but only if what’s being censored wasn’t deceitful or fraudulent to begin with.

            • Welch
            • 2 years ago

            100% correct. However, it’s a different matter when a company advertises on the premise that they are the portal to the internet and won’t shape search to censor. That is where I have an issue.

            Google is a company (see Youtube) and don’t have to provide you a platform for free speech obviously, but if they sold their platform to content creators, as they did, as a open platform….. then we have some issues.

            I’m all for the companies right to deny service to anyone or even censor, after all they aren’t government. They should just be required to state as much or at least not say something to the contrary.

            • derFunkenstein
            • 2 years ago

            [quote<]Google is a company (see Youtube) and don't have to provide you a platform for free speech obviously, but if they sold their platform to content creators, as they did, as a open platform..... then we have some issues.[/quote<] So are you saying that at some point in the past (between the point after Google acquired YouTube and right now) that Google said "upload whatever you want and there is nothing in our ToS that would ever give us the right to take it down"? Because I can't imagine that's what they did. And if that isn't what they did, then there's no problem. And here, Google is giving three months notice. I think that's plenty of time to find another way to pimp your wares.

            • NovusBogus
            • 2 years ago

            That’s roughly where I stand on stuff like this. Fully support both the right to refuse service to anyone and the right to refuse patronage to anyone. And of course, this is one of those topics where I get to speak from experience…

            • K-L-Waster
            • 2 years ago

            Refusing to accept business from specific customers is *not* censorship.

            Freedom of speech means you have the right to say what you want, not that others are obligated to provide a platform for you to do so.

            • Takeshi7
            • 2 years ago

            “Freedom of speech means you have the right to say what you want, not that others are obligated to provide a platform for you to do so.”

            Hmmm, so I guess you’ll be the first person coming to the defense of Turkey and China that they aren’t censoring the internet because they’re not obligated to provide a platform for their citizens’ speech.

            • derFunkenstein
            • 2 years ago

            No, China actively punishes people with the “wrong” speech. That’s way different. I can’t believe that you made that logical leap.

            • Takeshi7
            • 2 years ago

            So the great firewall is not censorship as long as the government doesn’t punish people with the “wrong” speech?

            • derFunkenstein
            • 2 years ago

            no, and I still can’t see the connection between preventing people from seeing something and just not accepting someone’s business. We’re not talking about unavailability here.

            • Takeshi7
            • 2 years ago

            When the company controls > 2/3 of the market, it can be argued that they are preventing people from seeing something.
            [url<]https://www.datanyze.com/market-share/advertising-networks/[/url<]

            • derFunkenstein
            • 2 years ago

            You’re equating things that are nowhere near equal. And that’s fine. You can be wrong. Have a nice day.

            • cygnus1
            • 2 years ago

            advertisements are not platforms for speech. no one is stopping people with these products from publishing content and having that content show up in search results.

            • dodozoid
            • 2 years ago

            Great firewall is censorship and is waaay different than google no longer actively promoting something.
            China is actively preventing 3rd parties to provide platform for information sharing. Google is just refusing to take part in certain trend… (edit: while not preventing anyone to promote anything elswhere)

            edit2: spelling

            • K-L-Waster
            • 2 years ago

            As others have mentioned, your comparison is deeply flawed. Turkey and China are actively blocking sites from reaching their residents. Google isn’t blocking ads from cryptocurrency companies — they are just not hosting ads from cryptocurrency companies on Google Adwords. Those companies can still advertise, just not through Google. Every company has a right to decide to accept or decline business from prospective customers. Google is no different.

            Now, if they made the Chrome browser actively block ads from cryptocurrency companies from being rendered at all regardless of who was hosting the ad, you’d have a case.

            • just brew it!
            • 2 years ago

            Google isn’t censoring speech; it’s not like they said they are banning cryptocurrency results in searches. They’ve just decided not to accept [i<]advertising[/i<] from cryptocurrency related businesses. Not the same thing.

            • YellaChicken
            • 2 years ago

            There’s a massive difference here and I suspect you already know that but admitting it doesn’t fit your overinflated argument.

            Example:

            If China chose not to actively advertise the events in Tiananmen Sq for money then you could say these things are the same.

            But China choose to erase all trace of things like that from record, hence they are different. Google is not removing evidence of these companies, they’re just not pushing them at people anymore.

      • Redocbew
      • 2 years ago

      Seven minutes to be exact. You sir, are a professional.

      Edit: math is hard.

      • sreams
      • 2 years ago

      I don’t understand this point of view. I don’t like olives, but I wouldn’t promote blocking advertisements for them. I simply wouldn’t buy them.

        • dodozoid
        • 2 years ago

        The comparison would work only if the olive industry would 1) enable easy drug smuggling undetected in olive oil bottles. 2) require so much fertiliser you couldn’t get any to grow your own crops

          • sreams
          • 2 years ago

          If olive oil bottles were easy to hide drugs in, I wouldn’t blame the olives or the olive sellers. The drugs are the problem (or are they?), not some container that happens to be good at concealing its contents. Perhaps we should disallow advertisements for safes, because “you can put your weed in there”.

          As for fertilizer… try growing a US dollar. “Growing” a crypto-currency may be difficult, but at least anyone can give it a shot without going to prison.

      • Sargent Duck
      • 2 years ago

      You’re wrong. Because I’m right. And I’m right, because you’re wrong. And I’m right.

      *mic drop*

        • Srsly_Bro
        • 2 years ago

        Logic checks out.

        #rekt

        • derFunkenstein
        • 2 years ago

        how eloquently put

      • cygnus1
      • 2 years ago

      You’re NOT wrong. Even being pro-crypto, I support Google making this change. There’s a very good reason these sorts of advertisements and sales pitches are illegal for other types of financial products/markets. All they serve to do is fleece the new/uninitiated/inexperienced investors. Advertisements like these make pump and dump scams way too easy to execute and serve no real purpose. For those wanting to learn about new crypto related products or events, the best bet is to pay attention to reliable news sources and other experts and not clicking on random ads promising 1000x returns or other nonsense…

        • derFunkenstein
        • 2 years ago

        Far more pragmatic than my reasoning. +3 for you. I hadn’t really thought about it in those terms, but you’re right: this will protect n00bz.

          • cygnus1
          • 2 years ago

          And beyond n00bz, it really protects everyone. Because by protecting the n00bz from themselves, you also protect the non-n00bz from the illogical (illogical because they’re uninformed) decisions of the n00bz. It adds an extra degree of difficulty to any kind of investing when there are large numbers of players making truly dumb decisions that you just can’t or don’t account for.

      • ronch
      • 2 years ago

      I never was a believer in these crypto currencies. It’s like suddenly finding out that you can make your printer print images or patterns that are so complex and very difficult to print and then deciding to call those ‘money’.

      But.. well.. if people wanna buy or trade used batteries or empty tin cans and the market is going up then I say sell them what they want and make a killing.

        • sreams
        • 2 years ago

        Have a look at government-issued currency. It’s even more ridiculous. Just print another zero on the paper and it’s worth ten times as much!

          • superjawes
          • 2 years ago

          (Most) governments have the authority to enforce that and the credibility for others to formally recognize it. Crypto-currencies have neither.

            • sreams
            • 2 years ago

            Having the authority to do something doesn’t make it right. The US dollar used to effectively be a receipt for something that was actually scarce and had value. Cryptocurrency has value because it is difficult to create, and so has built-in scarcity. Just like pretty much everything else that has real value. Government-issued fiat currencies have value simply because governments use force to get you to use them, and to prevent you from producing your own. Without that use of force, none of those currencies would have any value at all.

            • superjawes
            • 2 years ago

            Scarcity in your money is a BAD thing. It is supposed to be a facilitator, transferring the value of one item or service for another. The US dollar is dominant because it is printed on near-worthless material, but being backed by a strong, stable government means that people (even outside the US) are comfortable using it.

            If your money has inherent value, then people are more likely to hoard it, accumulating more value and wealth for a few instead of facilitating trade. We saw this with gold, and we’re seeing it with cryptos. Heck, we’re seeing schemes that would count as fraud (if you switched cryptos with stocks), where people artificially inflate the value before dumping it all on [suckers].

            In order for cryptos to “work”, everyone has to agree to use them AND you have to have protections so that a powerful few can’t screw over everyone else. You’d have to have someone with authority and credibility to back and protect it. IOW, you would need to do exactly what governments do with their fiat currencies…or you can just dump the cryptos and use what already works.

            • sreams
            • 2 years ago

            Any currency that is hoarded becomes, by definition, worthless as a currency. People will naturally move to something else that works as an effective currency in that case, and ignore the hoarder… unless, and here’s the rub, they are *forced* to use the the hoarded currency. That is why, with a true free-market currency system, hoarding is actually of no benefit. Gold itself was never the problem. The fact that it was illegal to use alternatives was.

            I find the debate about this topic frustrating for the same reason I find the gay marriage debate frustrating. People look at it from the narrow perspective of what government should allow them to do, instead of demanding that the government return the power to the people, or more specifically, the individual. The solution to the gay marriage debate is not a law defining marriage. It is no law on the topic whatsoever. People’s choices of who they marry should be their own, and what they choose to exchange should also be their own.

      • Takeshi7
      • 2 years ago

      “What’s stopping a company that uses nigh-Orwellian doublespeak to describe AdWords as “an advertising ecosystem that works for everyone” just as it bans legitimate businesses from using it, and claims that it protects “the open web” by instituting what can easily be argued is targeted censorship?”

      [url<]https://cointelegraph.com/news/google-adwords-ecosystem-that-works-for-everyone-except-for-a-lot-of-good-people[/url<]

        • YellaChicken
        • 2 years ago

        Censorship:
        “the suppression or prohibition of any parts of books, films, news, etc. that are considered obscene, politically unacceptable, or a threat to security.”

        It’s important to note here that Google are no longer accepting payments for advertisements from these businesses. They’re not removing search listings for their sites. Therefore this isn’t even close to censorship, regardless of how you spin the definition to suit your agenda.

          • sreams
          • 2 years ago

          Forget the word “censorship” for a moment. The question becomes, is this statement from Google true or false? “an advertising ecosystem that works for everyone”

          Yes, Google, as a private company, may reject ads from anyone. But to say one thing and do another is problematic. A more honest statement would be:

          “an advertising ecosystem that works for some!”

            • YellaChicken
            • 2 years ago

            I can’t just “forget the word censorship” when that’s his entire point throughout this comment thread.

            But if that’s the question from you then yeah, I get there’s a certain amount of irony in claiming something false about an advertising platform right before banning ads for making false claims.

            I think there’s a big difference though between “make $1000’s, guaranteed” and “works for everyone” when it comes to false claims. Maybe Google should reword that to “works for everyone except potential swindlers and their affiliates”?

            • sreams
            • 2 years ago

            Google isn’t just banning ads that make false claims. They are banning *all* cryptocurrency ads.

            • Redocbew
            • 2 years ago

            Google isn’t private. It’s a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc which is a publicly traded holdings company.

            • sreams
            • 2 years ago

            What I meant by private is that it is not a government entity. Yes, the stockholders are the owners, and they can choose to censor however they like. The 1st amendment does not restrict them.

    • thedosbox
    • 2 years ago

    I wish they’d ban any ads for RGB-LED infested products.

    Hi Zak!

      • RAGEPRO
      • 2 years ago

      Gr8 b8 m8, I rel8, str8 appreci8, and congratul8. I r8 this b8 an 8/8.

      Don’t h8, cre8, can’t w8.

        • auxy
        • 2 years ago

        HOLY CRAP IT’S 2007 AND I’M ON /b/

        • derFunkenstein
        • 2 years ago

        Theerrre gooooooes my heeeerooo, he’s ordinarraayyyyy

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