The Dutch gambling regulator KSA has censured Staatsloterij over its use of members of the Netherlands’ Euro 2020 squad in advertising.
The Netherlands.- The Dutch gambling regulator Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) issued a warning to the state lottery, Staatsloterij, and ordered it to remove adverts that showed professional football players.
The state lottery’s offending advert featured a number of players from the country’s squad for the Uefa European Championships, which runs from June 11 to July 11. It was first broadcast on Dutch television on May 25 and has since appeared in various forms on different channels.
In an amendment that came into effect in February, article 4 of the Dutch Gambling Act, prohibits licensed gambling operators from using professional athletes, whether a team or individuals, in promotional material.
KSA first contact Staatsloterij on May 31 to express its concerns and ask for the advert to be removed, giving it two days to respond. However, it later noted that another part of the campaign had been added.
On June 3, KSA decided to impose a charge on Staatsloterij due to the breach. It also published details of the violation on social media channels to make consumers and other operators aware. It gave the lottery until June 3 to withdraw the advert or edit out the images of players. Staatsloterij removed the players so they no longer appear in the ad.
KSA noted that if the lottery had failed to take action, it would have faced a penalty of €100,000 per day up until a maximum fine of €3.5m.
The Dutch regulator’s response
A spokesperson for KSA said its objective was: “to prevent vulnerable groups, including young people, from coming into contact with games of chance.”
He said: “Young people are especially vulnerable to developing addictions, including gambling addiction. This can lead to problems at a young age, but also later in life. For this reason, role models other than professional athletes should not be used if they have a substantial reach among young people or if they themselves are younger than 25.”