Google Changes Policy to Allow NFT Game Ads—With Some Limits

Google has issued a policy update for cryptocurrency-related advertisements that allows advertisers to promote blockchain video games that use NFTs. However, Google also issued restrictions around gambling-related crypto games, as well as games that offer token staking rewards.

This ad rule update, which will take effect on September 15, is the tech giant’s next step in establishing an open, but regulated approach to blockchain and NFT games. Google ads can be created for games that offer in-game cosmetics, weapons, or other in-game items as NFTs.

But Google’s ad policy update notes that any crypto or NFT game where players can “wager or stake NFTs in exchange for the opportunity to win anything of real-world value,” including NFTs, are not allowed to advertise with Google.

Any type of “social casino game” that grants users NFTs is similarly not permitted to run ads, while any “real money gambling” games are similarly prohibited from purchasing ads with Google.

Furthermore, games that allow users to stake or “lock up” their crypto or NFTs to earn crypto over time are also not allowed under Google’s new crypto ads policy, according to the post.

Anything that deploys elements of what Google deems “gambling” will be subject to additional restrictions and require firms to secure gambling licenses or certification through Google’s gambling application

Why does this matter? It’s another sign that Google recognizes the difference between games where the NFTs represent in-game items that enhance gameplay versus NFTs that facilitate gambling mechanics for players.

In July, Google published new rules for its mobile Google Play Store, allowing Android developers to incorporate NFTs into their games as long as they don’t incorporate gambling mechanics. Selling NFT “bundles” via gacha or loot box-style mechanics are also prohibited, according to the new Play Store rules.

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