Chinese-owned music and video sharing social media network TikTok has cracked down on the advertisement of financial services on its platform.
This blanket ban on the publishing of sponsored content related to finance includes investment services and cryptocurrencies, reports Markets Insider.
First reported last week, the super-popular platform updated its branded content policy, which restricts the promotion of industries like alcohol, weapons, and gambling – and will now include financial services.
TikTok’s content policy is quite extensive and even includes country-specific prohibitions. In Europe, it says, the promotion of junk food and energy drinks is prohibited, as well as the promotion of medical institutions and cosmetic clinics.
Now updated, the policy prohibits promotions of cryptocurrencies, trading platforms, investment services, “get rich quick schemes”, foreign exchange, debit and pre-payment cards, forex trading and others.
However, content creators need not fear as the ban seems to only apply to promotions and advertisements. Simply talking about crypto or other financial services will not see your account jailed. In fact, TikTok is currently awash with financial content – #investing has over 2.8-billion views.
A TikTok financial content creator with 264,000 followers, Errol Coleman, is quoted by Markets Insider, saying that recent promotions of a possibly fraudulent token from a large esports organisation on the platform could have been what propelled TikTok to make the move.
“There are many accounts now promoting questionable cryptos and other investments,” he added. “I believe that is where TikTok is seeing the issue.”
What is ‘Branded Content’ on TikTok?
According to the content policy, branded content is any content a user will “receive (or have already received) something of value from a third party such as a brand in exchange for [the] post, to promote that brand’s products or service, or which you may otherwise need to disclose in accordance with your local laws or regulations.”
This includes brand endorsement, partnership or any other kind of promotion for a product or service. Even showing off ‘gifts’ from companies on TikTok is considered branded content.
The social media platform said its branded content policy is “designed to ensure a safe and positive environment” for TikTok users.