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Gambling advertising - where do you see it?

Gambling advertising in family programming is a real point of frustration for many Australians.

However, it’s not only place these ads appear - recently we’ve seen reports of gambling ads when purchasing movie tickets, and on public transport, such as trains. If you spot gambling ads in public, snap a pic or otherwise let us know in this thread.

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In SMSs from my phone company

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While an old thread, recently I have noticed a substantial increase in gambling advertisements including:

  • when streaming commercial TV content. Almost every advertisement break there are advertisements for online gambling/betting houses.
  • online and in app video advertisements from gambling/betting houses, and more concerning, gambling apps which are marked as ‘game apps’ where one can plan and make a little bit of money. Many of the gambling apps seem to be foreign origin.
  • companies selling shares in race horse

The frequency of these advertisements has increased particularly in the past 1-2 months. I suspect it is due to covid where those in lockdowns may be more targetable - as they might be looking for things to do.

What is concerning is they appear in any classification of shows/apps and children using streaming serves/apps will be subject this barrage. Something which I am strongly not in favour of as our children do not need to see information on gambling, how fun it is to do (inc. with ‘mates’) or how one can win significant $$$ to spend. Gambling is a restricted activity (adults only) in Australia and these advertisements should be restricted to adult audiences only.

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I have recently noticed TV ads as recently as today which masquerade as lifestyle promotions with people gathered outdoors enjoying themselves until the ads chamge to someone holding a mobile displaying a betting app.

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I would like to see a ban on the advertising of online gambling. Anyone else?
I ask this question to assess the strength of feeling about the issue amongst the Choice Community and not, at this stage, to provoke a discussion on the pros and cons of the topic.

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Tis a bit hard to comment on this topic without getting into a discussion of pros and cons really.
But for me, the ads are a bit of fun. Nothing more.

Hi @clrintas

I have moved your topic into an already existing topic on gambling advertising.

This has been discussed many times here with the result that most if not all who frequent this site are against the online and media advertising of gambling. If you do a search about gambling on this site you will find the results of discussions which have called for the advertising removal.

As a short list of some of those results

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Online Gambling Advertising
  • Online Gambling Advertising Should be Banned
  • Online Gambling Advertising Should be Allowed
  • Online Gambling Advertising Should be Restricted as Adult Content
  • Other (please provide your answer in a comment in response)

0 voters

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There is a view that if a product is legal to sell it ought to be legal to advertise it. Yet we have banned tobacco advertising and, other than the tobacco industry, nobody seems to mind too much. In that case we have taken the view that if a product is a scourge that greatly harms society it ought to be discouraged. However banning the product itself may not be the best way to reduce harm. So in the case of tobacco it remains legal to sell but not to advertise.

The question becomes, is gambling such a problem that it warrants the same treatment? There are many products that may cause harm if misused or over used. We could end up banning advertising for alcohol, fatty food and fast cars. So how do you decide how far to go?

As I understand it the deciding factors for tobacco were; it has no safe level of use, it is addictive and it has a serious risk of morbidity and death. Gambling is addictive to some but others can have a flutter now and then and can otherwise leave it alone. It does have a safe level of use for most people. It doesn’t generally cause morbidity or death. However gambling can have very bad consequences for those who are susceptible to it just like alcohol.

The degree to which people gamble depends on many factors. The nature of the individual and society both matter. The greater the access to gambling and the more it is accepted as normal (even desirable) behaviour the more people will gamble. So restricting availability (fewer pokies) and banning advertising make sense.

My personal view is that anyone who gambles using any of the approved vehicles such as poker machines, horses, dogs, sports etc is a fool. I just don’t do it because in the long run you will almost certainly lose because the odds are always stacked against you. It is worth noting that in some circumstances if the individual tries to inject a level of skill into the process they will be banned as this may reduce the house edge and hence profits. Organised gambling is a stupidity tax.

If it left to me I would have no problem banning gambling advertising. But I don’t enjoy it at all. I have been known to play cards for rather high stakes but that isn’t the same sort of gambling as the odds are even and it is up to your skill.

I think it is a close call but on balance I think such a ban is going too far. You cannot save people from every weakness and the consequences are not as dire overall as tobacco. As an alternative I suggest that the advertisements must include information about the odds against the punter and the warning should be expressed in simple terms that make it clear how little chance there is, over time, of making a small profit much less a big win.

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A well considered response, Thank you for the detail of why.

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I’d support that if a total ban is not supported.
Part of the justification for the many forms of gambling is the community pay back that it supposedly supports. Could the industry also be required to fund equal time and costs for gambling harm awareness advertising as a community service.

Compared to volunteering or donating directly gambling is an inefficient way to support local community organisations.

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I think that is a complete phurphy. The system is manipulated so the community contribution is no such thing in many cases and applying a special tax on the stupid to pay for it is not ethical. It is a bit of misdirection cooked up by the industry who continue to laugh all the way to the bank.

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Thank you grahroll

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I always thought that online gambling advertising should be restricted adult content…but, I have noticed unless the advertising platforms allow users to set advertising preferences…and all online pages allow setting of similar preferences…to restrict or restrict the display of adult content to adults only, it is an impossible task to meet this requirement. They don’t have such optiins, and may lobby against it, as they are in the business to sell advertising to all and sundry.

I have also noticed increase in app advertising of gambling/casino type apps, and this advertising occurs even if minors use these apps or have their own accounts (in game advertising are examples where minors are exposed to advertising).

Imagine the reaction if alcohol advertising occurred in apps for platfroms minors regularly used. Gambling should be no different.

I have view now it should be banned, no different to tobacco or other vices.

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I am disgusted that there has been such a huge increase in bookies and betting on TV - throughout the day. Kids r fascinated by the variety of the ads & the pathetic monotonous warnings are laughable. This advertising is normalising gambling and impregnating young minds with the desire to win without effort - it’s not a true reflection of life - and sets them up for failure

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Or makes them more likely to be caught by scams?

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I too have noticed a huge increase in gambling advertising and in prime time on television. I find it at the very least annoying and at most a huge concern for young and not so young impressionable minds. Even our 25 year old son commented and asked about the standards and who we can complain to. I am amazed that the advertising standards allow this bombardment. I checked the policy of various organizations that monitor advertising, to see who I could complain to. As I read I got the impression that no standard was being compromised. Clearly the standards need reviewing ASAP.
I also heard, just this week, that research showed 1 in 3 primary aged children could name a betting company. There’s proof.

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But extremely unlikely to happen with the political parties in the pockets of the gambling industry.

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So Facebook allows you to hide ‘sensitive’ topics like ‘alcohol’ and ‘parenting.’ Interestingly gambling isn’t an option, even though it’s not hard to imagine a problem gambler wanting to not have the temptation in front of them. Maybe gambling advertisers spend too much for Facebook to limit them…

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Not everyone’s biggest concern granted, but YouTube now runs perpetual online gaming adds before it lets you watch whatever it was you’d clicked.

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