WazirX, CoinDCX and other Indian crypto exchanges will reportedly have new advertisement guidelines in the next seven to ten days

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WazirX, CoinDCX and other Indian crypto exchanges will reportedly have new advertisement guidelines in the next seven to ten days
WazirX and CoinDCXCanva
  • India’s crypto lobby, the Blockchain and Crypto Assets Council (BCAC), is coming up with new rules to determine how crypto exchanges can advertise on television and online platforms.
  • The new rules will reportedly be in place within the next seven to ten days.
  • The advertisement guidelines will be a part of the self-regulation code that is currently in the works.
The next seven to ten days will determine how India’s nascent crypto industry will present itself to the masses. The Blockchain and Crypto Assets Council (BCAC) is set to introduce a new set of guidelines to determine how crypto exchanges in the country can advertise on television as well as online platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+Hostar and others.

The move comes after crypto exchanges in India — which includes WazirX, CoinSwitch Kuber and CoinDCX — have been putting the pedal to the metal when it comes to advertising in the country. But, that seems to have landed them in hot water with the regulators for not giving sufficient warning about the pitfalls of investing in cryptocurrencies.

Navin Surya, who is on the advisory board of the crypto council, told the Economic Times ( ET) that the advertising guidelines will be a part of the self-regulatory framework that is already in the works.

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What is the fuss over crypto advertisements in India?



There was a time that most people in India had no interest in cryptocurrencies. But, the past three years — especially the year of the pandemic — have been key in changing that perception.

Meanwhile, crypto exchanges in India have also been doing their part to drum up business. They have been raking in sponsorship deals for bigwig events like the Euro 2020 football championships, the Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket tournament, and T20 tour between India and Sri Lanka.

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But, more visibility also means more criticism. A plea filed by advocates Aayush Shukla and Vikash Kumar in the Delhi High Court argues that these new ads don’t give enough warning to investors about the risks involved while investing in cryptocurrencies. According to them, the disclaimer text should cover 80% of the screen.

Trying to stay ahead of any official reprimands



Just as over-the-top (OTT) platforms tried to stay ahead of regulation in India with their self-regulatory code, crypto exchanges are also biding for the time until the industry matures.

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After the Delhi High Court’s notice, the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) indicated that it could introduce guidelines with crypto advertisements becoming “an emerging area of concern.”

ASCI guidelines are not legally enforceable. However, violation of ASCI guidelines is treated as a violation of government rules.

Cryptocurrency ads in India already have disclaimers — but there’s no ‘one size fits all’



The issue is not that these new crypto ads don’t have disclaimers — they do. However, each crypto exchange has been going about it in its own unique way. WazirX ads have a disclaimer that appears throughout the ad, but in a small font on the corner of the screen. With CoinDCX and CoinSwitch Kuber ads, it appears right at the end. In both cases, the font size is different.
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The Delhi High Court has asked for there to be a ‘standardised’ approach. The disclaimer — what it says, how it appears, the screen space required and its duration — should be the same for all the companies involved. Not only does that level the playing field but investors also are aware of the format and understand that there is risk in crypto markets.

For a more in-depth discussion, come on over to Business Insider Cryptosphere — a forum where users can deep dive into all things crypto, engage in interesting discussions and stay ahead of the curve.

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