First it was a crackdown on "fake news", then on Russian ads, now it's cryptos.
In a statement posted on its website on Tuesday afternoon, Facebook announced that it has created a new policy "that prohibits ads that promote financial products and services that are frequently associated with misleading or deceptive promotional practices, such as binary options, initial coin offerings and cryptocurrency."
Facebook lists the follow four examples of ads that will no longer be allowed:
And here is the justification:
We want people to continue to discover and learn about new products and services through Facebook ads without fear of scams or deception. That said, there are many companies who are advertising binary options, ICOs and cryptocurrencies that are not currently operating in good faith.
This policy is intentionally broad while we work to better detect deceptive and misleading advertising practices, and enforcement will begin to ramp up across our platforms including Facebook, Audience Network and Instagram. We will revisit this policy and how we enforce it as our signals improve.
We also understand that we may not catch every ad that should be removed under this new policy, and encourage our community to report content that violates our Advertising Policies. People can report any ad on Facebook by clicking on the upper right-hand corner of the ad.
This policy is part of an ongoing effort to improve the integrity and security of our ads, and to make it harder for scammers to profit from a presence on Facebook.
It is worth noting that the last time Facebook actively engaged in content moderation, when it implemented a "fake news" flag only to see demand for "fake news" stories surge, it will be interesting to note if Zuckerberg's latest attempt to sway public opinion backfires, and leads to even more demand for cryptocurrencies.
As for stunting the popularity of cryptos, if bitcoin, ethereum et al, are indeed dependent on facebook readers to keep the price rising, then it is probably time for a cleansing crash.