TV gambling ads ban comes into force in the UK

The changes come after the Industry Group for Responsible Gambling (IGRG) modified its own advertising code.
The changes come after the Industry Group for Responsible Gambling (IGRG) modified its own advertising code.

The ban introduced last year by the IGRG on TV gambling ads will come into force today in the UK.

UK.- A ban on gambling advertising during televised sports will come into force today in the UK. All TV gambling ads will be under a ban in the UK during pre-watershed live sports, starting five minutes before the event and ending five minutes after its end.

The changes come after the Industry Group for Responsible Gambling (IGRG) modified its own advertising code. The IGRG decided to come up with this solution after multiple criticisms for the high levels of gambling ads displayed on TV in the UK during the FIFA World Cup that took place in Russia in 2018.

The new code excludes horse and greyhound racing programmes. It includes an end to betting adverts around highlight shows and re-runs. It also features and an end to pre-watershed bookmaker sponsorship of sports programmes.

RGA says the ban aims at decreasing advertising around sports

Remote Gambling Association Chief Executive Wes Himes said: “The intent is the diminution of pre-watershed advertising around the sport with the exception of horseracing and greyhounds.

“We acknowledged the concerns raised in various quarters, particularly after the World Cup. The industry took a proactive, unprompted approach to address the issue with the fifth edition of the IGRG code.”

Himes also mentioned the whistle-to-whistle ban as an attempt to address the issue.

Himes added that they will conduct a study to evaluate the whistle-to-whistle ban. “That doesn’t prevent us from looking at other areas of advertising such as sponsorship, online advertising and so on, as part of our overall approach to responsible and safer gambling and the role that advertising and marketing play in that debate. It’s always under live review and we will look to do more, particularly around digital advertising to close the various anomalies on social media platforms, for instance, to ensure that advertising is not going to under-18s or vulnerable people.”

“We’re reviewing technology and we’re reviewing our guidance in that area to see if we need to strengthen it.”

The announcement

The announcement of the ban took place last year. Former Secretary of State Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Jeremy Wright welcomed the ban. “Gambling firms banning advertising on TV during live sport is a welcome move. “I’m happy that the sector is stepping up and responding to public concerns.” He said that companies should be socially responsible. He added that they should protect children and vulnerable people.

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