Bet­ting ser­vice punts on take-a-break ads

The Advertiser - - NEWS - JACK­SON GOTHE-SNAPE

AS REG­U­LA­TORS threaten a crack- down on online bet­ting, one com­pany will spend $1.5 mil­lion on ads telling gam­blers how to avoid ad­dic­tion.

Sports­bet – Aus­tralia’s big­gest sports bet­ting web­site – is plan­ning a four-week cam­paign in Novem­ber to pro­mote its “take a break” ser­vice, co­in­cid­ing with the spring rac­ing car­ni­val and cricket sea­son.

The ser­vice al­lows gam­blers to bar them­selves from bet­ting with the com­pany’s app – ei­ther per­ma­nently or for a shorter pe­riod, although Sports­bet will con­tinue to ad­ver­tise.

The move comes af­ter the in­dus­try was put on no­tice by the an­nounce­ment of a gov­ern­ment re­view into online gam­bling, headed by for­mer NSW Premier Barry O’Far­rell.

In­de­pen­dent Sen­a­tor Nick Xenophon said the move demon­strated there was a lot the in­dus­try could do to min­imise the harm of gam­bling, “but you can get around it by go­ing to another bet­ting provider”.

A na­tional self-ex­clu­sion register has been pro­posed by Fi­nan­cial Coun­selling Aus­tralia, which met with the Aus­tralian Wa­ger­ing Coun­cil two weeks ago about the de­vel­op­ment of such a scheme.

Sports­bet’s Cor­mac Barry said the self-ser­vice na­ture of the “take a break” cam­paign was its strength, as gam­blers did not have to tell a phone op­er­a­tor to turn off the tap. Ads for it will ap­pear on Fox Sports, freeto-air chan­nels and online. VIDEO: WALEED ALY ON AUS­TRALIA’S GAM­BLING AD­DIC­TION AT ADVERTISER.COM.AU

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