Ireland Bans Gambling Advertising

‘Ireland Labour Requests Irish Gambling Advertising Ban!’ (Image Source: images.unsplash.com)

In Ireland, the news of a licensing authority is a promising sign but recently the Labour Party’s anti-gambling campaign took a new twist as it submitted a draft that contains an Irish gambling advertising ban!

There is already some cause for concern for gambling companies that have millions invested in gambling-related advertising in Ireland as the well-respected Irish Minister for Public Health, Frankie Feighan, has made it clear in no uncertain terms that he supports the introduction of tighter restrictions on how gambling companies in Ireland operate. However, has not fully declared his support for the draft bill commenting that he would first need to read it.

News of the bill comes just over a month after the government announced that a new Irish gambling license will arrive by the summer of 2021.

Should the Labour party’s proposal move forward it would create a newly installed Gambling Prohibition of Advertising Bill 2021, and subsequently, all gambling-related advertising would cease in Ireland. However, the draft bill does make an exception for sponsorship deals, although once the bill is in place, that could change as we saw with the eventual complete removal of cigarette advertisements in the 90s.

Senator Mark Wall who is currently designated as the Labour Party’s lead spokesperson stated that the reason behind the latest attack on the gambling industry is because problem gambling in the country is increasing.

Rising Gambling Expenditure, a Concern for Ireland’s Bigwigs

The figures that the Labour party currently have at hand are from 2019 with 2020’s figures still not fully known. During that period Irish gambling reached a record €9.8 billion. It is the world’s 7th highest expenditure for a country with a population of just 5 million people!

As a result of these number, problem gambling is said to be a genuine issue and cause for concern. Aside from creating a new license, the only other way to quickly and sensibly attempt to curb the issue is to cut ties with the gambling industry by banning billboard advertisements, TV and radio adverts, magazine advertisements and stops all gambling advertising on public transport.

Another area the Irish government wants to hit is online advertisements. Currently, Google, Yahoo, and social media services allow online gambling companies to advertise online casinos in Ireland and sportsbooks as well as high street betting establishments within their pay-per-click advertising campaigns.

Connection Between Sports Events & Gambling Advertisements

One area Mr Wall is keen to eradiated gambling advertising sports. He said that the sports betting brands work hard to bombard sporting events with their adverts, free bonus bet offers, and an assortment of betting offers that incentivise people to sign up and place bets online.

According to the Senator and Labour Party spokesman, you will see at minimum one gambling advertisements in 75% of all sports broadcasts. Yet, others argue the stats are much lower with sports betting ads officially the seventh most advertised service during TV ads. Later it became clear that Mr Wall also included seeing the logo of a betting company or on a billboard while watching sports events.

Another statistic coming out of the woodwork is that reports of problem gambling and calls to gambling helplines considerably increased during the COVID-19 pandemic. This is also something reports issued by the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC), and GamCare also confirmed.

Quite how a ban will affect the growth of the Irish gambling industry is not clear. It may quell some of the exposure to younger Irish citizens and without advertising, the seed planted by advertising could help the Irish government reduce gambling addiction issues while it readies itself for the introduction of Ireland’s first online gambling authority in the summer.

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