Television advertisement in the gambling industry

The public communication made by the gambling operators turned into a hot topic once again this October when the National Audiovisual Council (CNA) proposed amendments to the Regulatory Code regarding the audiovisual content of the televised advertisement for gambling.

On this issue, the Remote Gambling Association was among the main advocates for the liberalization of this topic and participated in various debates within the CNA.

Mrs. Odeta Nestor, Chairwoman of the Remote Gambling Association, reiterated in a letter to the National Audiovisual Council a series of suggestions aimed to set the record straight on how gambling advertisement shall be conducted.

Among the points of view of the Association of Remote Gambling Operators (AOJND), the proposal allowing for the broadcast of advertisement during live sports events, the lifting of time slot-related restrictions – 23.00 to 20.00.

Odeta Nestor: “By the end of September we sent a letter to the National Audiovisual Council on behalf of the Association I represent, asking the Council to improve the regulations pertaining to the audiovisual content in terms of the televised advertisement for gambling. In my opinion, Romania may rally to such EU Member States as Great Britain or Malta where Televised advertisement for gambling is allowed subject to a minimum legal age of 18 years old and the creation of a responsible media content which shall not impair the integrity of the minors. The AOJND proposal was worded as follows: The advertisement for gambling is allowed during the sports events broadcast by the Romanian television channels, irrespective of their time slot, subject to the following conditions: – the broadcast of the advertisement for gambling should begin 30 minutes before the commencement of a sports event and end 30 minutes after the completion thereof. The advertisement for gambling should only cover the gambling activities that were licensed in Romania.

Another item in our letter refers to the reconsideration of the 11:00 p.m. as the start hour for the TV advertisement for gambling. I would like to say the association I represent is totally in favor of setting up reasonable as well as proportional limitations to the broadcast of advertisement spots on the Romanian television channels, but also considers that the 11:00 p.m. threshold may not be the best form to protect the minors.

I firmly believe in the idea of responsible gambling and, therefore, in media spots containing messages for responsible gambling. The National Audiovisual Council, through its members, showed its availability to listen and examine the proposals of the Remote Gambling Association and analyze the regulations from other European jurisdictions, and was to rule on the changes before casting their vote on the final draft.

To conclude, I consider AOJND continued, successfully, the debates required by the gambling industry, in collaboration with the state authorities, thus remaining a key player among the associations in the industry.”