The Association of British Bookmakers (ABB) may have just launched the Responsible Gambling and Player Protection, however it appears that UK ministers are prepared to further add restrictions to UK gambling regulators.
Sources close to UK Media and Culture Secretary – Maria Miller are said to have reported that UK coalition government is prepared to implement radical reforms and restrictions on gambling advertisements.
Over the weekend Ms Miller announced that she would ask the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) to research the implications of mass gambling advertisements broadcasted to the UK public, in multiple formats. Ms Miller would like the ASA to review whether change is needed in particular with TV and sports content gambling advertising.
A source close to Ms Miller cited to the Guardian Newspaper “We’re in the same kind of space as we were 10 or 15 years ago when they were asked whether it was appropriate for smoking to be advertised”.
The opposition Labour Party demanded that the government and the ASA review gambling advertisement and its regulations, due to concerns that UK minors where being overly exposed to gambling products.
Labour actions on the matter have led that party to propose an amended advertising bill on gambling which is due to be debated this week in the House of Lords. The Amendment forces gambling advertisement to only be shown on UK television before the 9pm watershed. The Labour party would mooted the possibility of further banning TV advertising of sports betting products during sports broadcasts.
The debate on gambling advertisements comes at a time of concern about the amount of money spent on betting among those who cannot afford it and the impact of addiction. The Guardian newspaper revealed on Sunday through a report from the Campaign For Fairer Gambling that more than £13bn was being wagered on retail betting products by the nation’s poorest districts.
UK gambling operators are yet to publically comment on the implications of potential restrictions on advertising of gambling and sports betting products.