ASA upholds decision on Coral TV advertisement

Following an independent review, The UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has upheld its decision that Coral must cease using its advert that features stylistic clips of footballers performing against the background of a dramatic soundtrack.  

In response to the two complaints that were received, Coral expressed that it did not believe the ad was harmful or irresponsible in any way. Adding, that it did not believe the tone of the voice over, featured on the advert was pushy or aggressively promoting the gambling element, as it was “a very straight and matter of fact read.”

The voice over at the centre of the advert, which The ASA agreed, was not pushy or aggressively promoting the gambling element and that it was matter of fact in its presentation, stated: “The beautiful game you can watch it or you can get involved in it with the latest Coral action. So are you a spectator or are you a player? You decide. Coral. Get in on the action.”

Nonetheless, as part of the judgement, The ASA considered that the overall tone of the ad implied that gambling was more exciting than being a spectator.

The ASA outlined that it considered the emphasis given to the term “player” in the voice-over, which it understood was a colloquialism referring to a successful person, contributed to the overall impression that gambling could lead to personal success and enhance personal qualities.

It added that it believed the stylised shots of the footballers implied that the gambler was equivalent to the successful player. Further, the phrase “Get in on the action” reinforced the impression that it was better to gamble than merely spectate and/or that gambling was a better alternative to watching the match, implying those who gambled were more involved or invested or had a stake in in the game and in doing so disparaged those who were not.

It concluded the ad was likely to suggest peer pressure to gamble, disparage abstention and suggest that gambling could enhance personal qualities and therefore breached the code.

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