Gambling adverts shown during Euros cut by almost half

  • Updated
  • By Max Jenner
Euro gambling ads
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The number of gambling advertisements aired during Euro 2020 has fallen by almost 50% compared to the number shown during the World Cup three years ago, according to data from ITV.

The data shows that during the group stages of the competition, 85 gambling ads were aired compared to 161 during the group stages of the 2018 World Cup, meaning a reduction of 47%. In terms of the number of ads shown per live match, the figures work out at 3.7 this year compared to 6.9 in 2018.

The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has attributed these statistics to the success of the ‘whistle-to-whistle’ ban on ads that it introduced in 2019, whereby gambling-related ads cannot be shown from five minutes before a match to five minutes after it before the 9pm watershed.

Commenting on the data, BGC chief executive Michael Dugher said: “These figures are testament to the success of the whistle-to-whistle ban and the continued drive for higher standards introduced by the regulated industry since 2019”.

He added that “the significant reduction in the number of betting commercials during the Euros, when compared to the last World Cup, is further proof of the commitment by our members to raising standards”.

A report released in August last year also seemed to show evidence of the success of the ban. Data showed that the number of gambling ads seen by children aged 4 to 17 had decreased by 97% and that the total exposure to them had declined by 70%.

The run-up to Euro 2020 saw numerous calls from campaigning groups and MPs to reduce the number of gambling ads shown during ITV’s coverage of the tournament. Advocacy group The Big Step had demanded the complete suspension of gambling ads during matches. ITV pledged at the beginning of June to “significantly reduce” its gambling advertising.