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The ASA informs operators of the impending UK influencer prohibition

The UK's Committee for Advertising Practice (CAP) has enacted new gambling advertising limitations in the UK, including the prohibition of any characteristics that would have a strong attraction to under-18s, such as top-flight players and social media stars.

Following a consultation, the revised guidelines were originally issued in April of this year.

The consultation came in response to GambleAware's study on gaming and minors.

“The new ‘strong appeal’ test prohibits content that has a strong level of appeal to under-18s regardless of how it is viewed by adults,” read a statement on the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) website.

“This will significantly impact gambling advertisers looking to promote their brands using prominent sports people and celebrities as well as individuals like social media influencers, who are of strong appeal to those under 18.”

The ASA stated that possible ambassadors who play for elite clubs, UK national teams, or in high-profile competitions would normally not be authorised under the new limits. However, retired or lower-league players may be permitted.

Operators are also advised not to use "an influencer whose material concentrates on youth-related themes."

The consultation received 27 replies from stakeholders, including the BGC, which stated that excluding sports celebrities from advertising would be a "step too far."

On October 1, the regulations were officially introduced to the CAP Code, implying that any marketing communication in the UK must follow them.

To restrict the attractiveness to under-18s, the new regulations place a greater emphasis on what can and cannot be presented in gambling advertising.

Initially, advertisements could not have "special appeal" to young people. This meant that if an ad was found to be of interest to young people, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) might penalise the operator.

Ads must no longer have a "strong appeal" to young people. This means that celebrities with a high concentration of under-18s, such as influencers and players, are not permitted to feature in gambling advertisements.



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