A couple of years ago, as cryptocurrency became all the rage and scams abound. The giant social media advertising platforms banned cryptocurrency ads.
Facebook issued a notice immediately terminating all ads for cryptocurrency while YouTube and Google took a softer approach but reached the same point. This had a wide-ranging effect on all the businesses related to online advertising.
Legitimate cryptocurrency brokers and regulated exchanges protested loudly, some initiate legal proceeding claiming that the giants were lumping all businesses into a group of scams and illegal providers.
Facebook & Google slowly issued new guidelines. Google would accept ads from regulated or approved cryptocurrency providers as long as they met the regulators guidelines for marketing and made no outrageous claims.
Facebook’s Policy Statement
The Social Giant later publishes this statement on the Facebook for Business website.
Rob Leathern, Product Management Director posted:
“In January, we announced a new policy to “prohibit 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.” At the time we also made clear that “this policy is intentionally broad while we work to better detect deceptive and misleading advertising practices… We will revisit this policy and how we enforce it as our signals improve.”
In the last few months, we’ve looked at the best way to refine this policy — to allow some ads while also working to ensure that they’re safe. So starting June 26, we’ll be updating our policy to allow ads that promote cryptocurrency and related content from pre-approved advertisers. But we’ll continue to prohibit ads that promote binary options and initial coin offerings.
Advertisers wanting to run ads for cryptocurrency products and services must submit an application to help us assess their eligibility — including any licenses they have obtained, whether they are traded on a public stock exchange, and other relevant public background on their business.”
Lawsuit Based on Policy
This policy is the basis of a new lawsuit filed against Facebook by Wissam Al Mana, the ex-husband of pop singer Janet Jackson. Al Mana filed a suit against Facebook in Dublin last week for defamation, false advertising and malicious falsehood. Wissam Al Mana, the executive director of Qatar conglomerate, Al Mana Group, is one of the most famous business magnates in the middle east and worth in excess of 1 billion dollars. Despite being well-known throughout the Middle East, where the business tycoon runs 55 companies with a payroll of more than 3,500 staff, Al Mana is notoriously private. He rarely speaks to the media and does not operate any social media accounts
According to Paul Tweed, a Belfast-based defamation attorney and Al Mana’s lawyer, defamation cases have a better chance of being successful in Europe, since Facebook supposedly hides behind the 1st Amendment in the US, evading this way the responsibility to protect its users as reported in BitcoinExchange Guide.
His case over the crypto scam is aimed at Facebook in Dublin for a reason. Ireland’s defamation laws are notoriously more plaintiff-friendly than the U.S.
Just a few months ago, a Bitcoin (BTC) investment platform used false testimonies from Titanic actress Kate Winslet, while saying it’s backed by Bill Gates, Elon Musk and Richard Branson. Other well-known crypto scammers such as the initial coin offering Centra Tech promoted boxing legend and superstar Floyd Mayweather, alongside with DJ Khaled. It turned out to be a fraud eventually, and the Securities and Exchange Commission charged its head with wire fraud.