Not everyone is convinced about the future of cryptocurrency. Google is the latest big name to crackdown on the cryptocurrency industry by banning any advertising about cryptocurrency-related content.
Out of concern that consumers were being harmed, the tech giant is following the footsteps of Facebook, which took similar measures earlier this year.
CGTN’s Mark Niu reports.
Starting in June, Google will ban advertising for crypotcurrency trading advice, exchanges, wallets and initial coin offerings – known as ICO’s.
But the industry is still moving ahead. Almost every week somewhere around the world a cryptocurrency conference is going on. The one called Token Fest in San Francisco is one of the largest in the world.
There, you’ll find everything from crytpocurrencies promising to be the future of money to crypto-tokens for gambling that have even partnered with the U.K.’s Premier League Football Club Arsenal.
Tokens are launched in ICO crowdfunding-style campaigns. ICO Alert said last year there were around two thousand ICO’s globally taking in 7 billion dollars, while already in the first two first two months of this year, a thousand ICO’s have launched with contributions of more than three billion dollars.
“About half of all ICO’s were either unsuccessful and didn’t reach their total funding goal. What we look at it as it’s gonna be a very similar failure rate to startups. Right now about 9, 9.5 out of ten startups in the world fail in their first year. We think the same thing is going to happen with ICO’s. But the five or ten percent that are successful are going to be wildly successful,” Rob Finch, Founder & CEO of ICO Alert said.
At just 25-years-old, Ashton Addison has been in the space since 2013, also founding his own startup that uses blockchain – the technology that enables cryptocurrencies. He said the ban of cryptocurrency-related advertising could be a good thing for the industry.
“I’m not sure what to think of the ban right now, it could be a good thing. There’s a lot of people, 99 percent of the world that doesn’t know what blockchain technology is and if they just throw their money in with these high hopes they are gonna make a bunch of money and they end up losing their money.”
Even Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak recently said he lost roughly $70,000 when an online buyer of several bitcoins he owned cancelled the credit card payment after the bitcoins had been transferred.
Some analysts agree with Google’s ban on cryptocurrency-related advertising but believe eventually that decision will be reversed once the industry matures and gains more trust.