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Google Updates Ad Policy Ahead of Potential Bitcoin (BTC) ETF Approval

In a strategic move, internet giant Google has announced an update to its cryptocurrency advertising policy, allowing advertisers to promote “Cryptocurrency Trusts” in the United States starting January 29, 2024.

Google is revising its “Cryptocurrency and Related Products” advertising framework to “clarify the scope and requirements for Cryptocurrency Token Trust advertisements.”

Google to Allow “Cryptocurrency Trust” Ads

In a statement on December 6, Google indicated that advertisers offering Cryptocurrency Coin Trusts in the U.S. could advertise these products and services, provided they meet specific requirements and obtain Google certification. According to Blockworks, Google stated in an email that the new policy would allow “cryptocurrency trust companies to advertise in the United States, provided they have completed our certification process and voluntarily registered with the SEC by submitting Form 10-12g.”

Google defines a trust in its announcement as:

“…financial products that allow investors to trade shares of trusts holding large amounts of digital currency.”

Elaborating on the definition of cryptocurrency trusts in an email to Blockworks, Google mentioned that they are “funds that invest solely in cryptos like Bitcoin. These funds are closed-end. They hold Bitcoin for investors, and their shares trade over-the-counter.”

The updated policy is set to take effect on January 29, 2024, according to Google.

Significant Relaxation of Policy

Traditionally cautious with cryptocurrency-related ads, Google seems to be loosening its previously strict policy. In August, the company relaxed some of its policies. Now, its lenient approach allows advertising for NFT games, crypto-accepting companies, and licensed providers of cryptocurrency exchanges and wallets. However, Google still prohibits ads for ICOs, gambling, and staking NFTs.

Speculation: Is Google Anticipating a Soon-to-Be-Approved ETF?

The shift in Google’s policy stance appears to coincide with the much-anticipated approval of the first spot Bitcoin (BTC) Exchange-Traded Fund (ETF) by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Bloomberg’s senior ETF analyst Eric Balchunas commented that Bloomberg sees a 90% chance of approval before January 10. Balchunas posted on X (formerly Twitter):

“People ask if I’ve changed the odds. No, we still stick to a 90% chance of approval before January 10 (this cycle), the same as we’ve been for months (before it became cool/safe). What we’re looking at now: More amendments/final documents coming out, and clarity on physical vs. cash.”

Thirteen companies eagerly await the SEC’s decision on whether to launch their products. Fidelity, BlackRock, and Grayscale are among the key players waiting for the SEC’s decision.


Sentiment: Positive


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