Google to relax casino ads policy

by Ethan Anderson Last Updated
Google to relax casino ads policy

Google is planning to allow online casino adverts in the United States in a stunning backflip on one of its moral advertising principles.

High Stakes is reporting the move could prove to be a boon for the poker, sports betting, casino and gambling industry, who have struggled to get their adverts through some of Google’s strict policies, despite states in the United States legalising the industry in recent times.

Google has so far restricted the ability of such companies to get their product to the masses through its search engine.

According to EGR Intel, Google is “planning to unblock online casino adverts in the US gambling market by the first quarter of 2020” following an earlier decision to allow fantasy betting in some states.

Last month, the states of Indiana, Iowa, Montana, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island were given the all-clear to advertise, joining Nevada, New Jersey and West Virginia – with countries such as Kenya, Nigeria and Colombia also named.

Operators will benefit tremendously because they will have access to tools such as Google Ads, Google Display Network and YouTube to target their customers.

For the online poker industry, it remains to be seen how much they will benefit, but this move reflects a general trend that sees the financial benefits take precedence over oppressive regulation.

Although Google is insistent hat regulation will still determine which markets get access to the relaxed rules, it is seen my many in the industry as a positive step.

Cyprus restricts gambling ads

Cyprus has become the latest European country to come up with restrictions in the way gambling services are advertised on its territory, Casino News Daily reported in July.

The Cyprus Gaming and Casino Supervision Commission announced Monday that it has crafted a set of rules regarding the promotion of the Mediterranean nation’s nascent land-based casino industry.

There are four operational casinos on the territory of the Republic of Cyprus – one temporary casino in Limassol, which will remain operational while a larger integrated resort is under development in the city, and three satellite casinos in Nicosia, Larnaca, and Ayia Napa.

All four gaming facilities operate under the Cyprus Casinos (C2) brand, which is managed by Integrated Casino Resorts (Cyprus) Ltd. (ICR), the local subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed gaming and hospitality giant Melco Resorts & Entertainment.

The Cyprus Gaming and Casino Supervision Commission issued on July 17, 2019 its Casino Advertising and Promotions Direction, which contains a list of restrictions ICR is obligated to comply with in order to avoid regulatory trouble.

The regulator’s advertising code took effect on the very same day it was issued.

The commission pointed out that its recently published directions set the standards and requirements for advertising casino gambling on the territory of Cyprus.

The regulator also noted that its latest move aims to “ensure gambling activities are carried out in a socially responsible manner.”

Japan to introduce strict gambling ad restrictions

Japanese lawmakers enacted controversial legislation legalising gambling resorts after a near two-decade long process.

On July 20, 2018, the “integrated resorts” law was passed, offering casinos along with hotels, entertainment and conference facilities.

The legislation creates a framework for the operation of casino resorts, following up on the integrated-resort promotion law of December 2016.

An initial three casino licenses will be issued with a 30 per cent gaming tax to be paid to the central and local governments.

Gaming areas are limited to three per cent of less of the total resort floor space.

Entry will be free to international visitors but cost US$50 for residents of Japan, who will also be limited to three visits a week and 10 per month.

Following this legislation and talks of an official bidding process for destination cities being imminent, policies have been announced for how gambling operators will be allowed to advertise in Japan.

All advertisements for casino activity will only be allowed in the international terminals of the country’s airports and seaports.

Locations such as railways, buses and tourist information centres are strictly off limits to gambling ads.

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