Svenska Spel stops online casino advertising
Svenska Spel has decided to stop online casino advertising. This applies to all media channels during the rest of 2019.
The decision has been preceded by intensive internal discussions about how we best protect our customers.
Svenska Spel has constantly driven the line that all games in the licensing market should be risk-classed and that stricter rules should apply to the more risky games, both in terms of design and marketing. With the advertising stop for online casino, we are now taking the full step.
No form of play is completely without risk for anyone who has a risk behavior. But the difference between different game forms is huge. If you look at the Public Health Authority’s new survey that came last week, you can see that net casino is in a class of its own. 30 percent of online casino players have problems managing their gaming. This compares with, for example, three percent for those who scratch Triss or play the Lotto over the net.
The guidelines’ annual report for 2018 confirms this picture. Over 60 percent of the callers indicate online casino as the main problem game. No other form of play is nearby. The closest is sports betting of 15 percent.
These are facts that we discussed at Svenska Spel last week and that made us put down our foot. Our online casino advertising already had a restrictive design, but now we choose to completely stop advertising for the rest of the year.
One can have objections. There seems to be no general link between game advertising and gaming problems. The public health authority’s recent statistics show that fewer people experience problems with their gambling now than three years ago, despite increased advertising volume. The general gambling problems do not only increase because the advertising does.
But at the same time, several studies indicate that those who already have a problem gambling are triggered by the advertisement. In the Public Health Authority’s report, we can see that the group with serious gambling problems has grown strongly in recent years and now consists of about 45,000 people. This suggests that those who are already at risk are adversely affected by advertising.
That is why we now stop the online casino advertising: Simply because we are not attracting people with an already risky gaming behavior to the most risky form of play.
Not long after Svenska Spel took this decision, three gambling managers with net casino wrote in their product portfolio a debate article in Dagens Industri . They also wanted to see a stop… for Triss-scrap in Nyhetsmorgon. About online casino advertising, they had nothing to say.
If you are serious about taking responsibility, then you should address the problems where the problems exist, even if it strikes the revenue in the short term. In the long term, this is the only sustainable one. It is also only when we can improve the industry’s reputation.
We would like more gaming companies to join a promotional stop for online casino. It would show that the gaming industry is taking consumer protection seriously says, Patrik Hofbauer CEO, Svenska Spel.