UK bans Luno’s ‘time to buy Bitcoin’ ads, calls them “irresponsible” |

Last month, Luno, one of the largest cryptocurrency trading platforms in the world, released a series of advertisements to push its services in the UK. In the ads, which were posted to social media and emailed to users in the region, Luno gave those interested in buying Bitcoin a “time to buy” alert along with a link to its platform.

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The UK’s Advertising Standards Authority has banned a Bitcoin advertising campaign by Luno, calling it “irresponsible.” The ad, which was run in national newspapers and on billboards, made references to the cryptocurrency’s fluctuating value, comparing the price of Bitcoin to the price of gold. However, the ASA ruled that the ad was misleading and must not appear again in its current form.

The UK’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has banned a number of popular bitcoin ads in the country, claiming they are irresponsible, according to a report published today by national media The Guardian. UK advertising regulators have informed Luno that its posters on the Tube saying When you see bitcoin on the Tube, it’s time to buy are misleading because they irresponsibly suggest that investing in bitcoin through Luno is simple and easy https://t.co/l2v27yA0M4 pic.twitter.com/J4gfMRjXl3 – Adam Samson (@adamsamson) May 26, 2021

Crypto-hard currency

The ASA previously banned a similar ad for cryptocurrency exchange Coinfloor in March this year, calling it socially irresponsible. This time he did the same for London-based crypto services company Luno, claiming that the ads did not adequately inform newcomers about the risks of crypto investments. We understand that investing in bitcoin is complex and volatile and can result in losses for investors, the agency said, adding: This is in contrast to advertising. The audience to whom he was addressing – the general public – was likely inexperienced in understanding cryptocurrencies. The advertising campaign was banned for, among other things, breaching the UK’s advertising code for misleading and irresponsible advertising.

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The reportedly large-scale campaign began in December last year, with advertisements placed across London’s extensive tube and bus network. The ad used this slogan or a variation of it: If you see bitcoins on the subway, now is the time to buy. #Bitcoin ads in the UK. Thanks to Luno Exchange. @LunoGlobal pic.twitter.com/yOZ8ULh9R – Ameero (@ameero1) 15. January 2021 But soon after, the complaints started pouring in. The public has said the ad does not reflect the many risks involved in investing in cryptocurrencies – last week the market fell nearly 40 percent from its January highs – and is therefore misleading. Moreover, trading in bitcoins and cryptocurrencies is not regulated, the complaints said. The ASA ruled in favour of the complaints, finding that Luno’s choice of location for its advertising, namely public transport, meant that it was targeting financial novices who may need more education about the risks of investing in cryptocurrencies. The agency added that the apparent simplicity of the Time to Buy statement gave the impression that investing in bitcoin was easy and affordable. Meanwhile, Luno said it would include an appropriate risk warning in future advertising campaigns, the report said.

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