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Here’s Why The U.K. Has Banned Gambling Ads With Celebrities

Published: June 27, 2022

Gambling advertisements in the United Kingdom(UK) that feature celebrities, sports stars, and social media influencers will no longer be allowed under a new ruling designed to “safeguard young people and vulnerable audiences” from developing a problem with gambling. 

“These rules will significantly impact gambling advertisers looking to promote their brands using prominent sportspeople and celebrities,” said the Advertising Standards Authority, which helped impose the ban.

With problem gambling rates rising in the U.K., the government has been tightening restrictions on gambling in recent years. New regulations include a cap on the maximum amount a person can wager at one time, stricter age and identity checks for online gambling, and more support for those struggling with problem gambling. 

A problem with gambling can look different for everyone but can include: 

  • Gambling more often and/or with more money
  • Withdrawing from relationships
  • Lying about gambling behavior to friends and family
  • Borrowing money to relieve financial distress
  • Gambling more to make up for previous losses

Meanwhile, in the U.S., private companies spend hundreds of millions of dollars on marketing that includes commercials featuring celebrities, billboards, podcasts, and sports team sponsorships. 

While this change in the U.K. doesn’t impact advertising in the U.S., it’s still important to see the adverse effects that these kinds of ads can have, along with how other countries are responding to this information. Before You Bet has dedicated blogs to this specific topic in the past.

If you think you or a loved one might be struggling with a problem with gambling, there are resources available on Resources include a two-minute quiz to assess risks for problem gambling, the warning 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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