Viral video from Coalition Against Gambling Ads reveals support for kicking gambling out of football
Owen Jones put it well on Jeremy Vine when he said: "We will look back in 10 years' time and say, 'I can't believe we ever allowed gambling advertising'."
Our understanding of gambling harms, and the role gambling operators play in exacerbating them, has increased considerably since the 2005 Gambling Act set the blueprint for regulation that liberalised advertising. So it's no surprise the government's Gambling Act Review, announced in December, includes an assessment of the role of marketing and promotion.
Public support for a crackdown on advertising is clear, including among football fans. Polling by Survation found a third of supporters would be put off buying their team's shirt if it had a gambling sponsor on it.
On Boxing Day, the Coalition Against Gambling Ads, which Clean Up Gambling co-ordinates, released a video alongside an op ed for the Independent. This video, entitled 'Don't make a hero out of gambling' [WATCH HERE] sought to draw attention to the impact of gambling advertising and sponsorship on children. At the time of posting, it has clocked up 1.4 million views on Twitter, through organic sharing alone. That means without any paid promotion at all.
As I argued in the Independent, hopefully we take a leaf out the the book of legislators in Spain and Italy, and 2020 will have been the last time we settled down to watch football during the Christmas period and saw players doubling up as human billboards for gambling brands.