The UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), has ordered Paddy Power to cease the use of its latest casino advert, after complaints were received that it implied that it was acceptable to gamble in the workplace.
The advert, which received two complaints in total, was revolved around a casino security guard who sings to the tune of “Papa Loves Mambo” whilst playing on Paddy Power Casino on his mobile device.
Paddy Power’s defence of the advert was that it hadn’t breached the BCAP Code, because whilst in song the security guard clearly states that he’s on a break, a line that the operator stated was ‘deliberately’ accompanied by the main character turning away from his screen to indicate that he was no longer working.
Nonetheless, despite noting there is an exception to the ASA code which condones featuring gambling in a working environment, for advert featuring licensed gambling premises. The ASA deemed that “the exception did not extend to allowing the depiction of licensed premises staff gambling in their own working environment.”
Therefore, the advert did breach two codes, one which condones normalising gambling in working environments and one which condones encouraging gambling behaviour that is socially irresponsible or could lead to financial, social or emotional harm.
Following the ruling The ASA ordered that Paddy Power cease broadcasting the advert in question and ensure that future ads don’t feature gambling in a working environment.