UK Advertising Regulator Bans 7 Crypto Ads

UK Advertising Regulator Bans 7 Crypto Ads

Regulators in the United Kingdom aren’t playing around when it comes to cryptocurrency, and this is even more evident following the ban on seven crypto advertisements.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) claimed that the ads were “banned for irresponsibly taking advantage of consumers’ inexperience and for failing to illustrate the risk of the investment.”

ASA’s Hammer Falls on 7 Cypto Ads

The banned ads included a Twitter post from Papa John’s Pizza and Coinbase paid Facebook advert. Other companies affected by the ban were mostly crypto trading platforms and exchanges, including eToro, Exmo Exchange, Luno Money, Payward, and Coinburp.

The Papa John’s ad can be found on its website and offers Free Bitcoin worth £10 to customers based on certain terms. The pizza chain claimed that the ads were part of its Bitcoin pizza day celebration, marking the purchase of 2 Papa John’s pizzas for 10,000 bitcoins in May 2010.

While the company claimed that the ad didn’t in any way advise people to invest in Bitcoin, ASA claimed that the offer trivialized what’s a potentially important and costly financial decision.

The agency noted that the ads targeted a general audience, including those who want to buy pizza but have little understanding of cryptocurrencies and inherent risks. It also said that the ads didn’t include any warning about the risks of crypto.

Coinbase’s Facebook Ad Also Banned

According to the agency, the Coinbase ad, which can be found on Facebook, is even more misleading.

The advert read, “£5 in bitcoin in 2010 would be worth over £100,000 in January 2021. Don’t miss out on the next decade — get started on Coinbase today.” It further said people could buy Bitcoin within 5 minutes on its platform and used the word “unregulated.”

ASA described it as misleading as it implied that Bitcoin would see a similar increase in the next decade without clearly stating that past performance doesn’t indicate what the future will bring.

According to the director of complaints and investigations at ASA, Mike Lockwood, the agency has crypto assets on its red alert, and consumers need to be aware of the investment risks. This won’t be the first time ASA would ban crypto ads. In May, the regulator banned an ad telling people “it’s time to buy” Bitcoin.

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