Gambling firms reviewing the number of sports betting adverts

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Since the UK Gambling Commission announced that there were at least 430,000 known problem gamblers here in the UK, the public are becoming more and more concerned at the number of gambling ads being shown on the TV.

Gambling Ads a Cause for Concern

The Labour party has called on a complete ban on the ads shown during live sport, after it was revealed that an hour and a half of gambling was aired during the world cup – when children were watching!

Tom Watson, the Deputy leader of the Labour Party wants to introduce a 1% levy on gambling companies, which will rake in about £140m a year. Currently, the voluntary levy only accumulates £10m. The new proposed levy would go a long way “to treat more gambling addicts when they require help with their condition”.

The Remote Gambling Association (RGA) which is made up of Bet365, William Hill, Ladbrokes and Paddy Power has insisted that they are mindful of the public concerns. As a result, the members held a meeting recently and discussed the following proposals;

  • Banning in-play ads during live broadcasting of football and other sports
  • A complete ban on pre-watershed advertising by gambling firms
  • Restricting the number of gaming ads to one per break.

Shocking statistics show that almost 60% of top-tier football clubs in England, have a gambling company splashed across the front of their kit. This led to anti-gambling campaigners complaining of how football is normalising gambling.

Matt Zarb-Cousin, a spokesperson for Fairer Gambling said: “Gambling operators are waking up to the overwhelming public opposition to advertising, particularly during live sporting events. It’s a rare occasion where spend on marketing to improve the image of companies is actually having the total opposite effect.”

Annual Review

The industry code for gambling is reviewed on an annual basis, claims the RGA, but recently, the gambling ads appearing on TV is almost spiralling out of control!

Speaking on the concerns, a spokesperson for the RGA said;

“The process for deciding what enhancements and additions might be introduced in 2019 is currently underway. At this stage it would be wrong to speculate on the outcome of the review. But we are all very mindful of the public concerns that have been expressed about the amount of sports betting advertising that takes place on television. In relation to the Young People and Gambling report, we note that the principal forms of gambling do not relate to online gambling. The issue of children and gambling is a complex area and we would never suggest that improvements cannot be made.”