BGC hails success of “whistle-to-whistle” ad ban

The ban on ads during televised sports fixtures was introduced in August 2019.
The ban on ads during televised sports fixtures was introduced in August 2019.

The association says the ban has dramatically reduced the number of gambling ads seen by children.

UK.- The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has reported that last year’s introduction of a “whistle-to-whistle” ban on gambling advertising during televised sports fixtures has dramatically cut the number of gambling ads seen by children.

The ban implemented on August 1 2019 prohibits gambling advertising during sports events shown before 9pm. The ban runs from five minutes before events begin until five minutes after they end. Only horse and greyhound racing are exempt.

The BGC cited research by media analytics provider Enders Analysis that found the number of gambling ads seen by four to 17-year-olds has fallen by 97 per cent.

The researchers reported that there were 1.7billion fewer views of betting ads during the first five months after the ban was introduced.

They found that total gambling advertising exposure during live sports shown before 9pm had fallen 78 per cent.

There appears to have been no shift in timing to place more gambling adverts after the 9pm watershed as a result of the new regulation, since the number of post-watershed adverts fell 28 per cent.

BGC Chief Executive, Michael Dugher, hailed the measure as a success, saying it had effectively eliminated childrens’ exposure to gambling advertising.

He said: “The success of the whistle to whistle ban is a clear example of that commitment and I’m pleased at how effective it has been during its first year in operation.

“I am determined that the BGC will lead a race to the top in terms of industry standards and we want to drive more changes in the future.”

The BGC is set to introduce its own voluntary Code of Conduct for sponsorship and advertising as it continues to lead on social responsibility measures.

The body has, meanwhile, praised the Welsh government for announcing a reopening date for the country’s four casinos set for August 29.

Wales was the last country in Great Britain to announce a date for casinos to reopen. Casinos in England were allowed to reopen from August 15 and Scottish casinos are due to reopen from today.

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