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Gambling advertising and sponsorship rules reminder for operators

07 September 2018

We’ve teamed up with the ASA and CAP to remind licensees of some of the key rules and requirements relating to gambling advertising and sport sponsorship.

Gambling adverts on football club websites

Operators must make sure their adverts or sponsorship links do not appear on football website pages that are targeted at children. For example, the junior sections of the club’s website.

Gambling logos on under 18s football shirts

Operators should make sure that they do not allow their logos or other promotional material to appear on any commercial merchandising (for example, replica shirts) which is designed for use by children. Operators must also take account of Football Association rules which require that in the case of teams comprising players all under the age of 18, that gambling logos must not appear on any item of kit or clothing.

Terms and conditions

The ASA regularly receives complaints where consumers do not feel the terms and conditions for offers have been made clear. Gambling firms must read the ASA’s specific guidance on Gambling ads: free bets and bonuses (opens in new tab) and its article on Promotional marketing: Terms and Conditions (T&Cs) (opens in new tab), which explains how conditions should be made clear to consumers. In addition to this, we also expect firms to ensure their promotions are not misleading and are in line with recent findings by the Competition and Market Authority.

Advertising that appeals to under 18s

It is not acceptable for gambling websites to display freely accessible ads, which feature images that are likely to appeal particularly to under 18s. Last year, we issued a joint warning to online gambling firms. Firms must read the ASA’s updated advice on betting and gaming which may appeal to children (opens in new tab) and review the guidance published by the ASA in November 2017 (opens in new tab).

Advertising and problem gambling

Gambling firms must ensure advertising does not appeal to or target problem gamblers. This includes advertising that creates an inappropriate sense of urgency, such as “Bet Now!” during live events, and undue emphasis on money-motives to gamble. Earlier this year, CAP announced tougher standards on gambling advertising (opens in new tab), which all firms should abide by.

All of the Gambling Commission’s guidance, advice and regulations for gambling advertising can be found on our dedicated webpage.

If in any doubt, operators should seek advice from the CAP Copy Advice team (opens in new tab).

Firms are also reminded, that new rules, which come into force from 31 October 2018, mean gambling companies that break advertising rules or breach consumer law will face tougher action. The new requirements provide stronger protection for consumers and ensure they are treated fairly by gambling businesses and make it easier for the Commission to take action, including imposing fines, against gambling businesses that break advertising rules.

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Last updated: 23 November 2023

Show updates to this content

Following an audit the 'guidance published by the ASA in November 2017' link has been updated to go to ASA's general advertising guidance webpage as the 2017 guidance has been removed. Formatting changes

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