Gambling adverts banned by authorities

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has banned advertisements by the online casino Intercasino and bookmaker Paddy Power.

The two gambling companies are the first to have their campaigns banned since the introduction of the new Gambling Act 2005 last September, which gave gambling companies more advertising freedom.

However, there were stipulations in that law and the ASA has deemed that both companies have breached them.

Intercasino’s television campaign featured dwarves rolling around hills in dice costumes and generally behaving silly, in what Intercasino has termed as "gentle slapstick humour reminiscent of old-fashioned routines by Charlie Chaplin or Benny Hill".

The ASA didn’t see it that way and have subsequently ruled that the ad breached the advertising code by appealing to young children by depicting juvenile behaviour.

Intercasino maintain the ad was not intended to be juvenile and the adverts were in keeping with its “fun and relatively light-hearted” brand.

Likewise, Paddy Power has had its press advertisement banned the ASA.

Their advert, printed in the Times newspaper, also featured a dwarf. This time the dwarf was sitting in a limousine, with a beautiful woman either side of him, smoking a cigar with a glass of champagne in his other hand.

Below the advert was a strapline saying: “Who says you can’t make money being short?”

The ASA ruled that the ad was irresponsible in linking gambling to “seduction, sexual success and enhanced attractiveness”. A big no-no.

Paddy Power defended their ad, saying they were trying to recreate a scene from the 1980’s hit-film “Wall Street”, starring Michael Douglas.

Paddy Power are no strangers to the ASA. They recently had their wrists slapped by the ASA for an ad, promoting their bingo brand, that featured a man breastfeeding a small baby with the strap line, "Where have all the women gone?"

Editor, - 2008-04-23 11:21:05

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