ASA Gives Green Light To Bet365 Tweet Featuring Boxer

June 14, 2023
The UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has determined that a promoted tweet for bet365, which contained an image of boxer Chris Eubank Jr, did not have particular appeal to children.


The UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has determined that a promoted tweet for bet365, which contained an image of boxer Chris Eubank Jr, did not have particular appeal to children.

A challenge against the advert was launched by the ASA to determine whether the ad included “an individual who was likely to be of strong appeal to under-18s and therefore breached the CAP Code”, according to the ruling.

Defending the advert, bet365 pointed out that Eubank Jr, as a boxer, is considered to be a low or moderate risk as boxing is an adult-oriented sport.

Bet365 also explained that its social media channels have age-gates to prevent access to users who are 18 years old or younger.

On platforms without a robust age verification method in place, bet365 said its targeted campaigns were only served to users identified as 25 years.

A major concern of the ASA was that Eubank Jr has a TikTok account where 31.7 percent of his followers are under 18. However, the total number of his followers of all ages on that platform was around 21,000, compared with a total of more than 1.7m across all of his social media accounts.

The regulator also noted Eubank’s appearance on popular TV show Celebrity Gogglebox, concerned that this might have made him appealing to under-18s.

“We considered the number of under-18 followers on TikTok was not significant in absolute terms and did not imply a strong appeal to under-18s more generally. We noted that Celebrity Gogglebox had been broadcast after 9pm and we considered that it was primarily aimed at an adult audience,” the ASA said.

The operator also explained that all social media channels used to run the ad had exclusion lists so that users who were identified as self-excluded or at a higher risk of gambling-related harm did not receive targeted content.

Additionally, bet365 said it developed “robust processes which included reviewing all individuals and content across all of their UK marketing channels”, which is undertaken by an independent compliance team at the operator.

Social media giant Twitter also told the ASA during its assessment that the promoted tweet was not in breach of Twitter’s Ad Policies and that they had not received any complaints about the ad.

Twitter did say that in the event the complaint was upheld, the ad would be removed from the site.

The decision follows a ruling published on February 8 involving Paddy Power, where the ASA determined that an advert featuring ex-England footballer Peter Crouch did not have a strong appeal to children.

However, on April 19, 2023, the ASA issued a ruling against BV Gaming Ltd, trading as BetVictor, for including two Barcelona football players who were likely to have a strong appeal to people aged under 18 years in a paid-for gambling advertisement on Facebook.

A major difference between the two decisions was the fact that the Barcelona players were still actively playing and considered “star” players that would be well-known for their multiple accolades.

News of the ruling in the UK comes as there are increasing concerns in the Netherlands about how to comply with the country’s impending ban on non-targeted advertising.

Speaking at the Gambling in Holland conference in Amsterdam on June 8, the Netherlands Gambling Authority (KSA) said it will not rush to enforce the changes, but instead work with operators that are taking responsible steps to comply with them.

One of the new incoming rules will require online gambling marketing to be confident that 95 percent of its audience are over 23 and are not part of a vulnerable group.

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