Online Gambling Ads in Spain to be Restricted

Published April 2, 2015 by Elana K

Online Gambling Ads in Spain to be Restricted

A new amendment pushed forward by the Spanish gambling regulator will restrict the appearance of gambling-related ads to the Spanish public.

The Spanish gambling regulator, Dirección General de Ordenación del Juego, promised it would happen, and it has. The regulator has finally succeeded in pushing forward provisions that will restrict online gambling advertisements and marketing to the Spanish public.

The provisions will take the form of amendments, to be added to Spain’s existing regulatory framework for online gambling. It will require licensed operators, Spanish media owners, sports clubs and sports governing bodies to conform to the new marketing guidelines.

Operators have until April 17 to appeal the amendments, but it does not seem likely that they will be overturned.

Provision Details

The new restrictions will only allow gambling product advertisements to appear on television between the hours of 22:00 and 6:00. Additionally, all forms of in-show sponsored advertorial will be banned, and operators that exercise aggressive marketing campaigns will be subject to fines and penalties.

Another area that the provisions cover is sports sponsorship. The amendments will curb the sponsoring of sports teams by online gambling operators, something that has been viewed as rather shady in Spain

Why the Restrictions?

Certain Spanish senate members had been expressing concern over responsible gambling, especially regarding teenagers. While gambling in Spain is regulated and there is no plan to change that, the Senate members went after the next best thing: the advertisers.

The senators put pressure on the Spanish gambling regulator to restrict ads in order to reduce the negative impact of online gambling on the vulnerable members of Spanish society.

But Spain Won’t Stop

While ads are being restricted, the online gaming industry in Spain is expanding. A number of new licenses have been granted within the country, and it is expected that slot machines will soon be made fully accessible. Perhaps the impending availability of casino games is why the Senators were keen to address the issue of ad restrictions as soon as possible.

It will be interesting to see whether the restrictions on advertising will have any actual effect on the numbers of Spaniards who turn to the tables, and the number of under-aged gamblers in particular.


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