Sky Bet reprimanded for ad

Sky Bet reprimanded for ad

Sky Bet has been ordered to withdraw an advert for its Request a Bet service by the UK’s Advertising Standards Agency.

Published 13th March 2019

The ASA ruled that the ad, which was shown on August 30 last year, encouraged irresponsible gambling behaviour.

The ad featured Sky Sports presenter Jeff Stelling, with a graphic of brainwaves emanating from his head in front of a large screen of odds and statistics.

In the ad, Stelling said: “Forget ‘anything can happen’. In sport, anything does happen. But could it be better? With Request a Bet it could. Spark your sports brain and roll all the possibilities into one bet. Three red cards, seven corners, five goals: lets price that up. Or browse hundreds of request a bets on our app. The possibilities are humongous. How big is your sports noggin? Sky Bet, Britain’s most popular online bookmaker. When the fun stops, stop.”

Two complainants claimed that the ad implied that those with a good knowledge of sports were likely to succeed with their bets.

In response to the complaints, Sky Bet said the references to knowledge - “spark your sports brain” and “how big is your sports noggin - referred to consumers using this knowledge to build their own bet using the new service and did not encourage irresponsible betting.

Clearcast, a non-governmental organisation that pre-approves ads for British television, supported Sky Bet.

However, the ASA disagreed with both Sky Bet and Clearcast, saying that the ad gave consumers an “unrealistic and exaggerated perception of the level of control they would have over the outcome of a bet and that could lead to irresponsible gambling behaviour”.

The ASA concluded that the ad breached its guidelines and ordered Sky Bet not to broadcast the advert in its current form again.

Sky Bet announced the closure of its affiliate programme in 2017, but reports have suggested that the operator is still working with selected affiliate partners.