Advertising which appeals to problem gamblers and promotes free bets and bonuses are to be banned under new standards. The Committees of Advertising Practice (CAP) includes:

1, Restricting ads that create an inappropriate sense of urgency like “Bet Now” offers during live events

2, Curbing the trivialisation of gambling such as promoting repetitive play

3, Preventing ads that suggest an “irresponsible perception of the risk for control” for example a ‘Risk Free Deposit Bonus’

4, Prevent undue emphasis on money motives for gambling.

The proposed standards also give greater detail on problem gambling behaviours and associated behaviours that should not be portrayed, even indirectly, and more detail on vulnerable groups like problem gamblers that marketers need to work to protect.

Shahriar Coupal, director of CAP has stated “we won’t tolerate gambling ads that exploit people’s vulnerabilities or play fast and loose with eye catching free bet and bonus offers. Our new guidance takes account of the best available evidence to strengthen the protections already in place, ensuring that gambling is entered responsibly, minimising the potential for harm”.

Personally, I advise members of the Professional Football Association (PFA) with regard to their debt and insolvency problems. I frequently see problem gambling as a cause of problem debt and insolvency. I frequently advise PFA members who have a gambling problem and require counselling and therapy to try to deal with it. The effects, with regard to their finances can be quite catastrophic. A problem gambler will become insolvent quite quickly and this will often lead to associated personal problems such as depression and anxiety, marital and relationship breakdown, and even losing the family home due to gambling problems.

Any constraints that can be brought in with regard to the gambling industry would be welcomed by me. I would go much further however and ban all advertising of gambling and certainly during live sporting events which are frequently bet upon by problem gamblers.

For confidential advice relating to debts, bankruptcy and insolvency please call me on 0845 287 0939 or email me.