Seven Defends Gambling Advertising Accusations
Channel Seven has defended itself against accusations that gambling advertisements from bookmaker sponsor, William Hill, saturated its broadcast of the Australian Open Tennis Championships, saying it complied with all advertising codes.
William Hill is the official wagering partner of the Australian Open and has an exclusive advertising agreement with Channel Seven. Critics have accused the broadcaster of exposing children to excessive gambling ads because the Australian Open took place during the school summer vacation.
BigDatr.com, a data analytics company, released data indicating that there were 114 ad spots for William Hill in NSW alone, over the first seven days of the tournament, as well as 118 spots in South Australia, 116 in Western Australia, 90 in Queensland and 77 in Victoria.
However, Channel Seven is adamant that they complied with the code for broadcasts.
“The code recognises community concerns around gambling advertising and strictly limits the amount of gambling advertising during sports broadcasts,” stated a spokesman for Channel Seven to Fairfax Media.
“In the first six days of coverage on 7 Melbourne, we broadcast over fourteen hours per day of tennis coverage on our main channel and only four minutes of gambling advertising.”
The current code bans all gambling advertising during G-rated programs, but an exemption exists during sports broadcasts. Critics are pushing the government to amend the code; however a spokesperson for the government said that there are no plans for any changes.
A spokesman for William Hill said that the bookmaker was spending in excess of $10 million in sponsorship and promotions through their deal with Seven and Tennis Australia. With regards to the claims of children being impacted by their gambling ads, he insisted that the bookmaker complies fully with the standards set out in the code for advertising.
March 23, 2017