Google, the biggest search engine platform in the world, has taken yet another strike at the cryptocurrency community. The tech giant is in the limelight for a rather uncanny step taken against one single project in the space.
Decenter, a Blockchain solutions, and decentralized application firm, announced on Reddit that Google has blacklisted ads pertaining to Ethereum [ETH], the third-largest cryptocurrency by market cap, and a leading smart contracts platform.
Notably, this is not the first time the search engine platform has blocked content related to cryptocurrencies. In early 2018, Google announced that they would be banning ads related to cryptocurrencies, trading and especially ICOs.
This was mainly due to concerns over deceiving users into investing in fraudulent ICOs through advertisements. The tech giant was also in the limelight when they put a halt to cryptocurrency mining extensions/apps on Google Play and Chrome.
This was soon followed with Google releasing another statement in regards to the cryptocurrency advertisements in the month of September 2018. Here, Google announced that they have updated their stance on the ban, adding that cryptocurrency exchanges can buy advertisements within the regions of the United States and Japan. Additionally, the tech firm had made headlines in the Ethereum community when Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder of Ethereum, posted a picture on Twitter, wherein an official from Google approached him with a job offer.
ThePlague, a Redditor, said:
“Google has various political and economic agendas, and they are quite willing to use their various services to promote their preferences. AdSense and Youtube are notorious for this, but there have been some incidents regarding the play store as well. Despite their supposed corporate “do no evil” motto, they are more than willing to use their considerable power to choose winners and losers in social, political, and economic matters.”
This time around, the biggest internet player is placed in the spotlight as accusation raise that the firm has blacklisted that have the keyword ‘Ethereum’. Decenter said on Reddit:
“We’ve been using Google Ads for the past 6 months to help us get more visibility for our smart contract auditing services and we’ve noticed a strange change in the last few days. It seems that Google completely blacklisted Ethereum as a keyword. Any of the keywords that contain “ethereum” in our campaigns are no longer showing ads as of January 9th and are now reporting the following error:”
The team also stated that Google Ads team claim that there have not been any changes to their cryptocurrency advertisement policy. Despite the claims made by the tech giant, ads related to Ethereum are not being displayed on the search engine platform since January 8, 2019, Decenter added.
“We are concerned that Google is targeting Ethereum specifically for some reason and wanted to see if we as a community could put some pressure on the Google Ads team to adjust their keyword policy or to at least provide a reasonable explanation for such discriminatory regulations.”
The Reddit post has also asked people to try and search for ‘Ethereum Smart Contract Audits’ and ‘EOS Smart Contract Audits’ on Google, to show the users that Ethereum is indeed blacklisted on the platform. The results are below:
Ethereum Smart Contract Audits:
EOS Smart Contract Audits:
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Grayscale Investments: Ethereum Trust [ETHE] receives FINRA approval for public quotation on OTC markets
Grayscale Investments, a digital asset management firm, made an announcement with regard to the second largest cryptocurrency in the market, Ethereum. The platform stated that the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority [FINRA] approved its Ethereum Trust, ETHE, making it the third publicly quoted investment product. The other two publicly quoted investment products are Grayscale Bitcoin Trust [OTCQX: GBTC] and Grayscale Ethereum Classic Trust [OTCQX: ETCG].
Grayscale Investments stated on Twitter,
“Our team continues to bring new opportunities for investors to gain exposure to digital currencies. We’re pleased to share that Grayscale Ethereum Trust received FINRA approval for a public quotation on
@OTCMarkets under symbol: $ETHE* https://gryscl.co/2M4wVER (1/2)”
In a blog post, the platform stated that each Share of ETHE would be equivalent to 0.09662399 Ethereum, as of 30th April 2019. Further, the asset management firm also stated that the Ethereum in each share would decrease over a period of time as ETHE would not “generate income” and the Ethereum would be “regularly distributed” to clear-out expenses.
It further stated,
“There will be no trading volume in the Shares’ public quotation until the Shares are DTC eligible, which ETHE is expected to receive soon. Investors will be able to find current financial disclosure and Real-Time Level 2 quotes for Shares of ETHE on the OTC Markets website once trading commences. “
The ‘announcement of this announcement’ was made yesterday by Barry Silbert, the CEO of Digital Currency Group, thereby creating a buzz. Barry Silbert had stated on Twitter,
@GrayscaleInvest for some big news at 9 am NY time tomorrow. Announcing an announcement (yeah, that’s how I roll)”
To add on, the firm had recently launched the #DropGold initiative, with its main focus being prompting investors to invest in the digital gold, Bitcoin. The firm had stated,
“Grayscale is again pushing the envelope for traditional investors with a clear message: it’s time to #DropGold. […] Grayscale is again pushing the envelope for traditional investors with a clear message: it’s time to #DropGold.
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