These upcoming changes to bookmaker advertising have been commented on by Prime Minister Julia Gillard stating that citizens are becoming ‘increasingly frustrated’ with the promotion of odds. Reports state current estimates that up to 500,000 Australians areat risk of becoming problem gamblers.
Julia Gillard further commented “From the moment that the players step onto the field, to the moment that they leave the field, there will be no live odds,This is good news for families because families I think have become increasingly frustrated about the penetration of live odds into sporting coverage.”
However, critics have panned the new measure as not going far enough because the broadcast of odds will still be permitted before or after a game or during a scheduled break in play such as quarter-time and halftime.
Further online gambling critics have been quick to that the limitations on advertising are not strict enough “The bans should commence from the beginning of the programme not necessarily the beginning of the match,” George Souris, Arts Minister for New South Wales told ABC.“And, of course, they must apply during the halftime and quarter-time intervals otherwise these bans by the Commonwealth will end up being a farce. They’ll be exploited.”
The partial ban also does not prohibit the showing of live odds on screens inside stadiums during games, which may then get televised as part of normal broadcasts.
Halftime odds publications through the mediums of TV are a popular marketing method for Australian bookmakers such as Sportingbet,Betfair and Bet365. Publicizing odds on popular Australian sports such as Rugby League, Aussie Rules and Cricket. However governing sporting bodies have sported the new legislation and standing firm behind the new live odds ruling.
Dave Smith, Chief Executive Officer for the National Rugby League commented “The overwhelming sentiment is that we do not want to see betting as the primary focus of our game,” said Dave Smith, Chief Executive Officer for the National Rugby League.“Fans and particularly young fans should not be subject to excessive promotion of betting during matches. We want young kids to be enjoying the skills of their favorite team [and] not quoting the odds.”
Australian Bookmakers are yet to make public statements regarding their stance on the mentioned ruling.