European gambling associations condemn corona-related gambling advertising

Several European gambling industry associations, including Dutch online trade body Speel Verantwoord, have condemned the use of references to the current Covid-19 pandemic in gambling advertising.

“During this particularly concerning time for citizens online gambling companies should act socially responsible and ensure that those Europeans who choose to gamble online can continue do so in a safe and secure environment,” the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) said in a statement.

In addition to the call to refrain from irresponsible “corona advertising,” EGBA listed several other social responsibility measures that operators are urged to take, including robust KYC and age verification procedures.

Spanish government bans virtually all gambling advertising during Covid-19 crisis 

Yesterday, Spain’s Council of Ministers adopted a new set of “urgent complementary measures” to deal with the country’s ongoing Covid-19 crisis.

These measures also contain several “consumer protection measures,” including severe restrictions (art. 37) on gambling advertising. The new restrictions include:

  • Gambling advertising that refers (either implicitly or explicitly) to the current Covid-19 crisis is prohibited.
  • Promotional activities aimed at attracting new customers or maintaining the loyalty of existing customers that make use of bonuses, discounts, prizes, or other gifts of economic value are not allowed.
  • Broadcast advertising is only allowed between 01:00 and 05:00 am. The same restrictions apply to online video platforms and video on demand services.
  • Online advertising, including individual email and social media messages, must be suspended.

The measures will come into force on Friday and will remain valid until April 12 but can be extended if the current emergency continues. Presumably, the measures will remain in force for the duration of the crisis.

Sportradar launches simulated reality sports events

In the ongoing absence of live sports, Sportradar has announced the launch of Simulated Reality, an AI-driven product for professional sports matches, which will be made available to customers within its existing portfolio of events.

Drawing on Sportradar’s historical football database and statistical output to provide match data for the product, the first simulated reality games will offer a comprehensive range of pre-match and live (in-play) betting opportunities. The simulations will reflect team form and normal match play creating an advanced gaming experience.

Simulated Reality will be launching on Friday, 3 April covering the top-tier football leagues from England, Germany and Spain.

Upcoming events & webinars

The following events and webinars may be of interest to members of the GiH community.

Events

Due to current events, most events that were to take place before the summer have been postponed.

However, the following events are still on track to take place later in the year.

  • EASG 2020, the 13th European Conference on Gambling Studies and Policy Issues, will take place in Oslo from 8 – 11 September. This year’s edition will focus on international differences in regulations and operations, as well as different approaches toward prevention, and treatment.
  • Betting on Sports America, the largest dedicated sports betting trade show in the world, returns to Meadowlands, New Jersey from 1 – 3 December.
  • The World Gaming Executive Summit will return to Barcelona from 7 – 9 December. Key themes on the agenda include AI, the future of land-based gaming, CSR, sustainable marketing, regulation updates, fantasy sports, and emerging marketing opportunities.

Webinars & virtual events

  • On April 2, the EGR Weekly Virtual Series kicks off with “Effective anti-crisis communication with employees and partners.”
  • On April 23, CDC Gaming Seminars will present the webinar “Understanding AI (Artificial Intelligence) and the Best Ways to Use It at Your Casino.”

Dutch MPs submit questions on remote gaming General Administrative Order

Members of the Permanent Committee for Justice and Security of the Dutch Lower House have submitted several written questions to the government on the recently published General Administrative Order (AMvB).

While none of the questions (and underlying attitudes) are particularly surprising, it is still striking that several political groups – CDA and SP in particular – are now trying to use the ongoing Covid-19 crisis to postpone the entry into force of the Remote Gaming Act.

Following the (expected) approval of both houses of Parliament, the General Administrative Order will also be submitted to the Council of State, which will advise the government on the legal implications of the proposed regulations.

After the General Administrative Order passes these hurdles, the Order will be further developed into a Ministerial Decree and, ultimately, specific licensing conditions.

Other news

The Dutch government reached a tentative agreement with Dutch horseracing associations Stichting Nederlandse Draf en Rensport and the Kortebaanbond to compensate these associations for the expected revenue loss as a result of changes brought about by the Remote Gaming Act.

Netherlands Gambling Authority chairman René Jansen has written a personal blog on the impact of the current Covid-19 crisis on the Dutch gambling sector.

Janshen-Hahnraths Group is looking to hire a corporate lawyer.

Belgium’s National Lottery has introduced some changes to its lottery and gambling rules during this coronavirus crisis.

The current Covid-19 crisis is testing the UK gambling industry to the breaking point, gambling consultants Regulus Partners observe.

Mindway AI hosted a very successful webinar on gambling addiction and neuroscience. Listen to it here.

Sweden’s former gambling monopoly Svenska Spel has announced a series of measures to help the business mitigate the Covid-19 pandemic, including cancelling a proposed dividend and furloughing most of its casino staff.

PokerStars founder Isai Scheinberg has pled guilty to illegal gambling in a New York court.

The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) has said that the current restrictions enforced in the country due to novel coronavirus (Covid-19) are costing the association up to PHP6bn (€107.4m) a month.