Gambling advertising

New gambling ad rules introduced

ACMA Information:

Gambling advertisements will be banned during the broadcast of live sports between 5.00 am and 8.30 pm on commercial free-to-air TV, radio and pay TV.

These new rules are contained in industry codes which have been registered by the Australian Communications and Media Authority.

‘The new restrictions on gambling advertising supplement existing rules about gambling advertising during live sport and significantly enhance community safeguards during times when children are part of the audience,’ said ACMA Chair, Nerida O’Loughlin.

‘The new rules will also ensure that broadcasters make clear to audiences, including parents, when gambling advertising is prohibited in live sport programming,’ Ms O’Loughlin said.
The successful registration of these codes avoids the need for the ACMA to introduce regulatory standards on these matters.

The new rules will come into effect on 30 March 2018. The ACMA will closely monitor their operation and after 12 months will consider whether to conduct a formal review of their effectiveness.

Similar gambling advertising rules are currently proposed for online content service providers. The ACMA will consult with stakeholders about the draft online rules once the required new legislation is passed by Parliament.

Key features of the new rules

The new rules supplement existing rules about gambling advertising during live sport, introducing more restrictions if the live sport is broadcast between 5.00 am and 8.30 pm.

In general, the rules mean that during live sporting events:

  1. that are broadcast between 5.00 am and 8.30 pm each day:
  • no gambling advertising or promotion of odds is permitted from five minutes before the published scheduled start of play, until five minutes after play, including during breaks

  • there are limited exceptions, for example during breaks of extended duration where unrelated programs are broadcast and/or in long form live sporting events (such as the Olympics)

  1. that are broadcast between 8.30 pm and 5.00 am each day:
  • no gambling advertising during play (but may be broadcast before and after play and in scheduled and unscheduled breaks)

  • no promotion of odds during play or in breaks of play (but may be broadcast before and after play)

  • there are limited exceptions, for example during breaks of extended duration where unrelated programs are broadcast and/or in long form live sporting events (such as the Olympics)

  1. gambling representatives must at all times not be, or appear to be, at, or around, the ground

  2. commentators are not permitted to do promotion of odds from 30 minutes before play of a live sport, until 30 minutes after play.


ASTRA unveils new rules restricting gambling advertising during live sport broadcast

The Australian Subscription Television and Radio Association (ASTRA) today announced a set of new rules designed to restrict gambling advertising during television coverage of live sport.

The new rules are set to be implemented from 30 March 2018 and restrict the airing of any gambling advertising between 5:00am and 8:30pm^, meaning there will be no gambling advertising during game play or during scheduled and unscheduled breaks in play. During all other times, existing gambling advertising restrictions will apply.

ASTRA’s new rules were developed in conjunction with the industry and approved by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and have been updated in the subscription television Codes of Practice.

The move addresses public concerns regarding gambling advertising during live sports to ensure safeguards are in place during times that children are likely viewing.

The ASTRA Codes include a conditional exemption from the new rules for sports channels with a very low audience share (0.5% of the viewing audience). The ACMA has placed strict limits around this exemption, which will ensure it is only available to the very small sports channels on the platform, and will not apply to any Fox Sports channel or to any nationally significant events. Existing gambling advertising limits will continue to apply to these small channels.

^Foxtel’s single national feed restricts its ability to broadcast across multiple time zones. The new time-of-day restrictions will apply to AEST or AEDST time zones, which reflect the vast majority of the subscription TV viewing audience.

Full details of the ASTRA Codes of Practice are available on the ASTRA website at:

That means we should see less of Sportsbet advertorials featuring Joel Caine (NRL) and Matthew Campbell / Nathan Brown (AFL) during match broadcasts.
Although will we see more of this notice similar to the one shown in South Australia during the NRL last night?

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Main Event will be exempt it seems, as is the Fox Sports equivalent channel that is shown in pubs and clubs.

Also exempt, if my reading of the last couple of lines of this is correct, is the browser versions of the network live streams and possibly their apps? The paid HD version of 7Plus and paid content like the extra streams of the Commonwealth Games and tennis also appears exempt.

I wonder how these new rules will work when it comes to Seven’s horse racing coverage and of course, Sky Racing/RACING.COM - gambling odds are at least 75% of the appeal when it comes to those!

Apart from that, changes to the rules regarding gambling advertising are well overdue.

Horse, harness and greyhound racing is exempt.

Edit: From the code


I’d say closer to 99% $0.99 out of $1 worth of appeal

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Statement from SBS regarding new gambling advertising restrictions

SBS is absolutely committed to making the necessary changes to restrict gambling advertising during live sporting events on all of its platforms, including online, in accordance with the Government’s policy.

However, the implementation mechanism set out in the Bill is inconsistent with the established framework for public broadcasting in Australia. Implementation of new restrictions should be achieved under one set of consistent rules which already exist in the SBS Codes and cover TV, radio and online platforms. This is a simpler complaints process for audiences, who would otherwise be required to lodge TV, radio and online complaints with SBS but direct specific online gambling complaints to the ACMA.

Any suggestion that SBS is not fully supportive of delivering the gambling advertising changes is totally incorrect and those attempting to link this to any commercial matters are deliberately detracting from the core issue, which is ensuring that our broader editorial independence is not compromised.

New gambling ad rules for online streaming services

The Australian Communications and Media Authority isconsulting on new rules to restrict gambling advertising during live streamed sport.

‘Until now, rules restricting gambling advertising have applied to broadcasting services only,’ said ACMA Chair, Nerida O’Loughlin.

‘The new online rules will extend community safeguards online, including the banning of gambling ads during live sports streams between 5.00 am and 8.30 pm.’

Recent legislative amendments enable the ACMA to make online content service provider rules.

Enhanced gambling advertising restrictions for broadcasters have been in effect since 30 March 2018. The new online rules will seek to mirror these restrictions as far as possible and will be settled following consultation.

‘The proposed rules will bring together a “safe zone” across traditional and new media platforms, with a particular focus on when children are a part of the audience. They will make it clear to viewers, including parents, when gambling advertising is prohibited and extend other important restrictions into the online environment,’ said Ms O’Loughlin.

‘The ACMA strongly encourages stakeholder submissions and reminds potentially affected online content service providers to prepare for implementation of the new rules,’ Ms O’Loughlin added.

Why can’t there just be a blanket ban on betting advertising including live odds?

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Do it.

Gambling is a legal activity last time I checked.

But there is an oversaturation of betting ads.

So is cigarette manufacturing and consumption…


Is gambling a legal activity? Yes. Should gambling remain a legal activity? That’s debateable. Although since people would probably just turn to the black market if all forms of gambling were illegal, it’s probably for the best that there are legal forms of gambling in a regulated market.

Should gambling advertising be restricted, especially when it comes to the promotion around sport which many families/children enjoy? Absolutely!

…and tobacco sponsorship used to be a major part of sport (and probably sports coverage on TV/radio prior to cigarette advertising being outlawed) in Australia!

Nothing more than unnecessary regulation IMO.

While I agree the networks, Nine in particular, went way too far and these are the consequences I guess.

I don’t think gambling should be banned, but the television advertising for online bookmakers should be I think. I saw an ad for a newish bookie Neds that’s run by a guy that used to head up Ladbrokes in Australia. The ad offered the usual flashy free enticements to setup an account to reel in the addicts, with the slightly blurry gambling help line fine print down the bottom of the screen that gives them a facade of having a moral conscious. This guy has already had couple of ads banned as they breached the regulations.

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I have no problem with restrictions around it. It just seems like out and out banning it is a bit much

Australia spends the most on gambling per capita in the world. And it overwhelming affects lower income families. Something needs to change.

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