The United Kingdom’s advertising regulator, Advertising Standards Agency, has branded two Arsenal fan token sales as “irresponsible.” They deemed that the advertisements were deceptive to consumers regarding the dangers of investing in cryptocurrencies. They also advised the English Premier League club not to repost the crypto adverts.
Irresponsible Facebook Cryptocurrency Ads
The UK’s advertising agency ruled that the ads on Facebook took advantage of people who are new to investing in crypto assets. They also kept mum that this sort of token is entirely unregulated in the United Kingdom.
The ASA said one advertisement neglected to disclose that the fan token was a cryptoasset. Customers needed to purchase a particular cryptocurrency to use it. Arsenal is one of several major football clubs that offers fan tokens through the Socios app, a partner since July.
On August 12, the club’s $AFC fan tokens increased in popularity through a Facebook post advertising. The ad included three of the team’s players, Ben White, Calum Chambers, and Kieran Tierney.
A website post on August 12 with the title “$AFC Fan Token: Everything you need to know” provided information about the Arsenal Fan Token and the advantages it gave. The ASA said that Arsenal did not disclose whether their “token” was a cryptoasset.
The ASA said that the ads must not be released in the form complained about. Furthermore, they said that future advertisements should not trivialize any cryptocurrency investments. Also, marketers must educate customers about the ambiguity of cryptoassets and their potential value.
However, Arsenal argued that their fan tokens differed from virtual currencies such as bitcoin. Arsenal told the ASA that it reminded customers to spend only what they could afford. Also, people should seek independent financial advice if they need it.
According to a statement provided to CNN by Arsenal, the football club plans to appeal the ASA’s decision. Following that, Socios responded that they were “open” to Arsenal’s request for an independent investigation.
Football Fan Tokens
Football fan tokens are a cryptocurrency that allows fans to access club membership services. These perks include product designs, voting on club decisions, and participation in competitions.
In recent years, they’ve grown in popularity. They are linked to top football teams like Manchester United, AS Roma, and Paris Saint-Germain. Most of these football clubs promote and sell cryptoassets through Socios App.
In July, Arsenal offered a fan token collaborating with sports entertainment firm Socios. As reported, several football clubs use the platform, which claims to have sold coins worth between $270 million and $300 million.
However, in August, the Arsenal Supporters’ Trust (AST) warned: “Socios.com is a cryptocurrency service, yet none of the marketing we’ve seen so far addresses it.