Google has announced major changes to its advertising policies for crypto and related financial products, which will take effect on January 29, 2024.
The new framework will enable Cryptocurrency Coin Trusts, which are financial products that allow investors to trade shares in trusts that hold large amounts of digital currencies, to create and serve ads on Google.
However, direct promotions that imply or offer buying, holding, or swapping of crypto are still banned.
The policy update comes as the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is expected to approve several Bitcoin ETFs in the next month, according to Bloomberg ETF analyst James Seyffart.
A Bitcoin ETF is an exchange-traded fund that tracks the price of Bitcoin and allows investors to gain exposure to the cryptocurrency without having to buy or store it directly.
Seyffart estimates that the chances of a US spot Bitcoin ETF getting approved by the SEC are 90%, based on typical SEC procedures and timelines.
Google’s new advertising framework is based on new criteria through its certification process, which requires advertisers to comply with local laws and industry standards and to obtain relevant licenses and registrations.
The framework also allows businesses that accept virtual currencies for payments or sell mining hardware, as well as educational content on crypto, to advertise on Google, as long as they follow the current Google Ads regulations.
However, the framework also prohibits ads for several crypto-related ventures that are not under the scope of current regulatory frameworks, such as initial coin offerings (ICOs), DeFi trading protocols, unhosted software wallets, and unregulated DApps.
Moreover, Google restricts ads for NFT-based games and platforms, allowing only those that offer in-game purchases of items, characters, weaponry, or armor with improved stats.
Google does not allow ads for games where players can wager or stake NFTs in exchange for the opportunity to win anything of real-world value, including other NFTs.
Google’s policy update reflects the growing popularity and adoption of crypto and web3 technologies, as well as the increasing regulatory scrutiny and oversight of the industry.
Google’s move to allow crypto ETF ads could boost the demand and awareness of crypto among mainstream investors, especially if the SEC approves the first Bitcoin ETFs in the US.