After the government of the United Kingdom revealed its resolution on the controversial FOBT (fixed-odds betting terminals) several months ago, gambling regulatory bodies focus has logically turned to another issue. Now, it’s sponsorship deals on gambling in the EPL (English Premier League) and Television gambling advertising, which has caused lots of controversies, with more discussions on that issue emerging every day.
It has been reported that gambling advertising concentration around live sports events that are aired on television, especially football matches, has been increasing over the past few years. Both charity organizations and regulators have alerted that this trend could be dangerous to more viewers who are vulnerable, especially for underage individuals, as it could end up making gambling appearing normal to them. This could end up raising the harm that is caused by the risks that are related to gambling.
Advertising campaigner for anti-gambling has insisted on more strict measures to be imposed on the rules of gambling advertising in the United Kingdom to ensure that people who are under-aged and vulnerable individuals will be better protected. People who are opposing gambling advertising during daytime have called for the United Kingdom government to step in and take further measures by banning gambling advertising from television broadcasts before the watershed. Also, they insisted that all sponsorship agreements between football clubs (particularly in the EPL) and gambling companies must be stopped. The outcome of such a decision, however, could be arguable.
Unwise to Suspend Online Gambling Advertising
Governments of other nations around the globe have also been trying hard to tackle the harm that is related to gambling through a stricter regulatory regime that is imposed on operations of online gambling. Currently, the United Kingdom is among the nations that are considered best regulated regarding gambling. In the meantime the UKGC (UK Gambling Commission is the watchdog that’s taking care of regulation of online and offline gambling, with more than 95 percent of the gambling operators paying taxes to the United Kingdom Government on all their gambling revenue.
Despite proponents of more stricter regulation in EPL shirt sponsorships and gambling advertising call for actions in an approach that’s more restrictive to be obeyed, the truth of the matter is such measures don’t mean that the ongoing issues associated with the industry of local gambling will be solved. The reason behind this is that there are currently 9 gambling operators that appeared as sponsors of the English Premier League in the year 2018/2019.
A total of 8 operators from this figure are foreign gambling companies, predominantly coming from Asia. Considering that most of the home countries of these operators don’t permit gambling advertising, the latter isn’t subjected to regulation, and they’re not able to force these companies into a particular role model in terms of kit sponsorships.
Moreover, everything becomes more digitized day by day, including gambling advertising and gambling itself. More customers are turning to online betting nowadays, hence it would be an unwise decision by the government to completely suspend products advertising of online gambling. The responsible authorities, on the other hand, could consider a possible licensing policy update, which imposes some highest measures on any gambling company to meet that they can provide their services to the local customers.