The proliferation of online and mobile gambling within the U.K., has spurred an onslaught of sports betting advertisements during sporting events, as European bookmakers aggressively compete with one another for market share; a situation certain to replicate itself here in the U.S. as the availability of sports betting expands.

So, the board of the Remote Gambling Association recently met to discuss self-regulation; a pre-emptive attempt to stave off the industry crippling Government legislation, that recently passed in Italy.

Bans on pre-watershed advertising (meaning ads prior to 9pm) and in-play advertisements, and a hard limit on the number of gambling ads permitted within a single commercial break, were among the solutions discussed; but the meeting failed to produce a consensus on any recommended changes to the industry’s voluntary advertising code.

The focus of the annual meeting indicates that European bookmakers firmly understand what’s at stake here, but with 35-member gaming companies divided on corporate social responsibility it’s likely that only Government regulation (or broadcaster intervention) can curb the volume and frequency of sports betting advertisements during games.

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