GambleAware hails CAP response to U18 research as lottery ads face restrictions

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GambleAware has commended action taken by the Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) to effectively ban celebrities and influencers from partaking in gambling advertisements.

Yesterday, CAP announced its stringent set of new rules that state gambling and lottery advertisements must not “be likely to be of strong appeal to children or young persons, especially by reflecting or being associated with youth culture”.

The new directive comes into effect on October 1, 2022, as the committee strives to safeguard people aged under-18 and vulnerable members of the public.

CAP’s new measures follow its response to GambleAware’s Final Synthesis Report.

Zoe Osmond, CEO of GambleAware commented: “It is absolutely right to take precautionary action to prevent gambling problems becoming established among children and young people, so we are pleased to see this proactive measure to protect under-18s from exposure to gambling adverts.

“We also are delighted that GambleAware’s research led to these steps being taken. Our research, published in 2020, showed that 94% of 11-17 year olds in Great Britain had been exposed to gambling adverts in the last month, seeing six adverts on average.

“Nearly two thirds of this group had seen gambling adverts on social media, while nearly half had seen sports teams, games or events sponsored by a gambling operator.”

The so-called “step-change” of the current laws is set to prohibit imagery with features or references to sportspeople and other influential figures.

After SBC questioned how it intends to define a threshold for gambling adverts deemed to be targeting under-18s, CAP responded: “Extensive guidance accompanies the new rules to support marketers in their application of those rules.

“We expect advertisers to take a cautious approach when advertising gambling products. References to imagery or culture that specifically appeals to under-18s would be a problem under our new rules and could lead to ads being banned.”