Spain imposes EMERGENCY restrictions on online gambling publicity as addictions soar amid Covid-19

Image of ex-Pope Benedict XVI. Credit: Wikipedia - By Fabio Pozzebom/ABr - Agência Brasil [1], CC BY 3.0 br,

SPAIN has introduced emergency restrictions limiting publicity for online gaming and betting, as gambling addictions rise while the country is in lockdown during the coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis.

The government today passed urgent measures that now restricts publicity for online gaming, betting and gambling, across all online media and internet channels such as YouTube, as well as television and radio.

The new restriction means that gaming companies will not be able to advertise between the hours of 1am and 5am on any media from today until the end of the lockdown (April 12). In addition, any advertising and publicity relating to online gaming outside of those hours cannot offer any promotions, vouchers, discounts or gifts (unless it’s on the home page of a betting/online company). This restriction includes all personalised publicity too, whether it’s via social media channels or email.

These emergency measures have been taken to protect the “well-being” of citizens, especially the “most vulnerable from aggressive online advertising,”, said the government. The move comes as many associations for ex-gamblers have contacted the government regarding a worrying increase in the number of calls they having been receiving relating to gambling addictions, particularly since the lockdown began.

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Pepi Sappal

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