World Cup Crucial To How Gambling Is Marketed Across The World
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As one of the calendar’s largest and most lucrative sporting events, the football world cup presents terrific opportunities for gambling companies globally. However, this year’s world cup taking place in Qatar represents something more than just the potential for profits.
In the current climate of gambling crackdowns and tighter restrictions on how betting organisations can operate and represent themselves, how betting is allowed to be marketed during this world cup could be one of the defining touchstones that informs policy over the next few years. France, for example, has announced that they will implement a new set of rules and recommendations around how bonuses are marketed. These rules are about making how bonuses (which entice gamblers to bet with one organisation or another) are sold to the consumer more transparent. In addition, the Autorité Nationale des Jeux (ANJ) have announced that they will ban the marketing and sending of bonuses to gamblers who are considered volatile or excessive. These rules are about protecting gambler welfare and preventing harmful gambling practices.
Timing of the implementation
The timing of the implementation of these rules is also by no means coincidental. After a massive backlash against how France advertised betting during the Euros, regulatory bodies are making sure to get ahead of accusations for this world cup by changing policy before the event begins. France is unlikely to be the only country changing how betting offers are marketed, either. For example, the Netherlands will implement a new rule preventing companies from generating ‘untargeted’ gambling ads soon after the end of the world cup.
However, some of those in the county wanting to make sure player welfare is the number one concern have protested that this policy change won’t come soon enough to make a difference. On the other hand, the UK is still waiting for the Gambling Act review to be published, something that could have huge effects on the gambling industry in the coming years. However, thanks to the turbulent leadership battle over the last few months, the Gambling Act white paper may not be published until after the World Cup begins. Ultimately, gambling organisations will be under immense scrutiny during the world cup and must be very careful to be seen actively protecting player welfare.
However, some critics have said it won’t matter if gambling industry companies are squeaky clean. Controversy will be manufactured to legitimise further crackdowns anyway. This world cup presents itself as an opportunity for the gambling industry to show its best side and ensure that any grievances levied at their door can be refuted with empirical evidence. If those representing the industry can expose their critics as overzealous and spiteful, there may be light at the end of the tunnel yet for sportsbook betting.
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