AGA blasts call for federal sports betting advertising ban

The AGS believes the proposed legislation would violate free speech protections.
The AGS believes the proposed legislation would violate free speech protections.

AGA’s senior vice president has issued a statement criticising Paul Tonko’s Betting on our Future Act.

US.- American Gaming Association senior vice president Chris Cylke has criticised New York representative Paul Tonko‘s proposed Betting on our Future Act, which seeks to ban the advertising of sportsbooks anywhere in the United States.

He said: “The American Gaming Association (AGA) and our members adamantly oppose any legislation that seeks to ban or limit casino gaming advertising, including for legal sports betting.”

He added: “any such effort only serves to reduce awareness for legal options to the benefit of illegal, offshore operators and the detriment of consumers and communities.”

According to Cylke, “the proposed legislation would violate well-established free speech protections and undermine the expertise of more than 5,000 state and tribal gaming regulators across the country.”

The ban would cover television, radio, the internet or any other form of electronic communication under federal regulation. Introducing the legislation, Tonko said: “These aggressive advertising campaigns pose particular dangers, with promises of “risk-free” bets enticing vulnerable individuals to get hooked on their products. If these companies won’t do more to curb the surge in problem gambling, the federal government must step in.”

Cylke said: “Responsibility is a foundation of the legal gaming industry and that includes with advertising. In fact, there’s never been more attention paid or resources invested in responsible gaming and problem gambling resources. This includes our proactive efforts establishing the Responsible Marketing Code for Sports Wagering, which mandates responsible gaming message inclusion and imposes restrictions on target audiences, outlets and content.”

He added: “Congress should instead focus its attention on combatting the predatory and pervasive offshore illegal market that offers no responsible gaming measures, age verification or problem gambling resources.”

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