Australia Banning Betting Ads During Televised Daytime Sporting EventsPublished March 18, 2018 by Ivan P
With the new regulation, sporting events broadcast from 5:00 AM to 8:30 PM will no be allowed to show any betting ads during the matches.
Starting with March 30, betting ads during daytime televised sporting events will be banned in Australia. The move by the government comes as a a result of a months-long debate on how to better protect Australians, especially children, from the harmful effects of gambling.
Listening to Community Concerns
According to Mitch Fifield, the Federal Communication Minister, the government has listened to community concerns regarding the amount of gambling promotional materials shown on TV and decided to take action. From March 30, sporting events on major TV stations broadcasting from 5:00 AM to 8:30 PM will not be allowed so show any betting ads. The ban will also apply to the time frame of five minutes before and after the start of the event.
This is an important step for the gambling reform supporters who have been advocating for a change for a long time. However, the regulation that will take effect in the couple of weeks' time still leaves much to be desired from their perspective. Many are still fighting for the outright ban on betting and gambling advertising during sporting events, with no exceptions.
Exceptions to the Rules
The new regulation will apply to major Australian TV houses, but it will not affect what is deemed as "low-audience" channels. These are foreign channels such as ESPN and Eurosports, with very small audiences, and the government believes that not many children watches them. Furthermore, if the ad revenue dropped, it is possible that broadcasting to Australians would no longer be feasible for these channels.
Also, the regulation only tackles TV ads, while online advertising isn't covered at all. Some in the industry are concerned that this will push advertisers towards the online arena completely, while taking away income from TV channels. The new bill has been promised that will also tackle the ads on the internet, but it could be months before it is passed. The ban on ads doesn't apply to the coverage of horse and dog races.