In 2018, top platforms like Google, Facebook and Bing in a bid to crackdown on cryptocurrencies and the increasing fraud committed by bad actors, banned cryptocurrency ads on their platforms. According to a report put out by Bing today, 5 million cryptocurrency ads were blocked on the platform.
According to the report, the company blocked 200,000 accounts from using its ad platform, a number the company says is two times more than that of 2017.
In total, the company took down 900,000 million ads among which 5 million were cryptocurrency related.
Cryptocurrency as an asset class saw a bull run in 2018, increasing valuations multi-fold. The high returns and volatility of cryptocurrencies invited a lot of interest from retail investors and speculators looking to make a quick return. There wasn’t much regulatory oversight, and the overall pseudo-anonymity built into currencies like bitcoin made cryptocurrency a prime target for fraudsters and scam artists to defraud end-users. Bing Ads therefore decided to ban cryptocurrency content from our advertising platform and blocked more than 5 million adscontaining cryptocurrency content.Bing report cited
Though many within the cryptocurrency space pointed fingers at these top media platforms for deliberately targeting cryptocurrencies due to their fear of its impact on their business, Bing Ads cited in the report that it also pulled down ads which were weapon related.
The company claims that it took down over 18 million ads related to weapons like guns, accessories used to create ammunition and aids or guides to reloading weapons.
Google and Facebook have since after the initial ban, lifted them with Google citing it was only going to accept Ads from regulated cryptocurrency exchanges but many argued the main reason was that ads accounted for a very large position of their revenue.
However, it is important to note that even though 5,000,000 cryptocurrency ads were blocked by Bing, it only accounted for 1% of the total ads the platform deemed not suitable for their platform.