E L Emerson
The topsy-turvy start to they year for cryptocurrencies continues apace, as Facebook has opted to close out January by banning adverts promoting the recently embattled blockchain-driven market, and initial coin offerings (ICOs), on its social media platform.
The move follows a promise by Facebook to make sweeping changes to its news feed, including reducing posts from publishers, increasing content shared by people on their own individual social networks, and drawing a line under cryptocurrency advertising; as it regards these financial products and services are “frequently associated with misleading or deceptive promotional practices.”
Cryptocurrency prices have plunged over the last 24 hours (perhaps by response to Facebook’s decision), leaving Bitcoin and its altcoin brethren across the Top 10 coins with losses ranging from between 6% to 15%.
The weak hands will run, and the opportunists will pick up the pieces.
There is little doubt that fraudulent cryptocurrency businesses have caused significant financial damage to people throughout the world, and that increased regulation would certainly be welcomed by those who have suffered through that process.
But it does make you wonder how far Facebook is willing to go to protect its user-base from financial fraud and poor advice.
In fact, it almost begs the question: Will Facebook stop taking adverts from UBS, Deutsche Bank and HSBC as regulators have pounced once on these lenders for so-called “spoofing” and manipulation in the US futures market?
And will the social media giant cut off the gravy train of advertising revenue from other banks and investment intermediaries, like RBS, whose financial conduct and the damage it inflicted on the business community dwarfs all crypto market sins to date by a factor of ten, and Lloyds who recently reached a settlement with its own long-suffering fraud victims?
Sure, it’s good to see Facebook and other social media giants making efforts to protect their members, but to some it might appear that in this crypto-reckoning, some pigs have been deemed more equal than others.
E L Emerson, Editor, HNW
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