August 16, 2023 3 min read


ASA Chastises bet365 for Irresponsible Advertising

The authority found that the gambling giant’s most recent advertisement featuring soccer player Granit Xhaka appealed to individuals below the legal gambling age of 18

bet365’s irresponsible advertisement featured on the Sky Sports Premier League X (formerly Twitter) account, drawing attention to its content and messaging. Despite the operator’s arguments that the ad did not violate any rules, the ASA banned it in its current form but did not enforce any additional penalties. The authority’s decision further reinforces its commitment to upholding responsible advertising practices in the gambling industry.

The Ad Had Several Problem Elements

The ASA’s innovative Active Ad Monitoring system notified them of the bet365 advertisement, triggering an investigation. This system utilizes advanced artificial intelligence (AI) technology to identify online advertisements that might violate advertising regulations. The authority’s challenge centered around onboarding Granit, who strongly appealed to those under 18.

Furthermore, the problem video incorporated digital elements like circles and triangles, along with the prominent bet365 logo, further increasing its potential appeal to underage viewers. Combined with the footage of Granit Xhaka’s triumphant goal against Manchester United, these could create a concerning combination.

bet365 tried to appeal the ASA’s decision, arguing that the Sky Sports-produced ad had strict controls to ensure only users above 25 would see it. They also noted that Xhaka’s soccer content did not target young audiences. However, the authority stood by its decision, noting that bet365 had actively promoted the problem tweet and that the platform’s age verification system was often insufficient.

Enduring Vigilance Ensures a Safer Online Space

As per the ASA’s ruling, bet365 must take down the offending ad in its current form. The authority did not take any further action but advised the operator to carefully consider using individuals with a sizeable under-18 following for gambling advertisement purposes. bet365’s past brush with the ASA led to a more favorable ruling, but this recent incident appears to have crossed a line.

While gambling advertisements are vital in promoting entertainment and betting opportunities to adults, they mustn’t inadvertently target a younger audience. The ASA’s vigilance has significantly reduced youth exposure rates as it collaborates with advertisers, agencies, and platforms to ensure children can safely browse online.

The ASA’s recent rulings regarding cases like bet365’s Granit Xhaka advertisement underscore the crucial role such regulatory bodies play in upholding ethical standards and ensuring that ads meet the necessary criteria for responsible messaging. Striking a balance between engaging adult audiences and avoiding any potential appeal to minors remains vital for maintaining the integrity of advertising within the gambling industry.

Deyan is an experienced writer, analyst, and seeker of forbidden lore. He has approximate knowledge about many things, which he is always willing to apply when researching and preparing his articles. With a degree in Copy-editing and Proofreading, Deyan is able to ensure that his work writing for GamblingNews is always up to scratch.

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