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Sports Betting Ads: How Much Is Too Much?

Published: February 28, 2022

Sports betting advertising has grown exponentially over the past few years, especially as more states – including Ohio – have started to legalize it.

In a 2017 Ohio Gambling Survey, it was revealed that 24% of Ohio adults who were at risk for problem gambling were engaged in sports gambling. Now, industry experts are starting to ask how much sports betting advertising is too much, and what the potential risks are that can come with increased advertising. 

The U.S. isn’t the only country to go back and forth over placing restrictions on sports wagering advertisements. While some argue for more restrictions, other leaders in the sports betting industry are worried about harsh government restrictions, which have happened in Europe after the commercialization of sports betting took off.

According to The Detroit News, Italy has banned all gambling ads since 2019, and Spain prohibits sportsbooks from advertising on player jerseys or stadium names. It also restricts broadcast ads for any other forms of gambling between the hours of 1 and 5 a.m.

The U.S. has not imposed such regulations on sports betting ads, partially because the legality of sports betting varies from state to state. But as it continues to expand nationwide, it’s important to acknowledge that sports betting advertising can be triggering for those who are struggling with a problem with gambling. 

While these days it’s difficult to ignore the numerous sports betting or fantasy sports ads that you encounter, Before You Bet wants to encourage Ohioans to engage in sports betting responsibly should they choose to do so. 

Below are a few ways to get set before you bet. 

  • Set limits on time and money spent on gambling.
  • Gamble only with money set aside for entertainment.
  • Balance recreational gambling with other healthy activities. 
  • Know the risks before you bet.
  • Keep gambling a social activity.
  • Bet only what you can afford to lose. 

Before You Bet also offers a Sports Betting Toolkit of educational resources focused on sports enthusiasts and the many ways they may choose to gamble, such as in-person, online, and fantasy sports.

If you think you or a loved one might have a problem with gambling, there are a wealth of resources available on for those who need help. This includes a two-minute quiz, a full list of the signs and risks of problem gambling, and educational resources.

The free and confidential helpline is also accessible 24/7 by calling 1-800-589-9966 or by texting 4HOPE to 741741.

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