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B.C. Will Not Ban Athletes from Gaming Ads

The British Columbia Lottery Corporation will not be following Ontario’s recent internet advertising changes, as it refuses to ban the use of athletes from featuring in iGaming ads. In a recent radio interview, the Crown agency’s Matt Lee reminded that BCLC already has a policy in place forbidding it from using sports stars or other celebrities to endorse gambling.

BCLC is a state-run agency responsible for conducting and offering regulated gambling in B.C. in a fun but responsible manner. However, the Crown already has a rule in motion that does not allow it to use celebrities or role models to promote gambling activities. This is due to their appeal to younger audiences and trying to protect them from gambling from a young age.

Sports Bettors are More Vulnerable

In his recent interwire, Mr. Lee noted that sports bettors can be a more at-risk demographic of gamblers, which is something that BCLC keeps an eye on and its main focus is on player health. He said the corporation is trying to advertise in a way to supports players’ health, as it abides by its own standards for marketing and conducts player health assessments on its products.

Furthermore, Mr. Lee also commented that it was interesting to remark that BCLC’s standards in the province have been around for quite a while. He added that the Crown corporation meets advertising standards that are set out by the province and includes a mandate through which they don’t and can’t use celebrity or entertainment endorsers whose appeal is to younger demographics.

Currently, the only legal online gambling platform in the Province of B.C. is offered by the BCLC – PlayNow.com. The platform provides the widely popular single-event betting which was legalized by the federal government in August 2021. Recently, the country marked two years after its introduction, which also sparked concerns among gambling experts who are worried about its effects.

Luke Clark, the head of the University of British Columbia’s Centre for Gambling Research shared that one in four British Columbians participate in some form of gambling. He explained that instead of betting on three or four matches at the time, can now wager on just one. The expert said that with the change, sports gambling has become faster than before.

On the topic of that, Mr. Lee shared that single-game sports wagering has accounted for more than half of the all the sports bets that have been placed on PlayNow. He explained that its introduction has removed the barrier to parlay betting, hence, making it easier for the casual players to place their bets on sporting events, as they can now place a bet on an individual event.

Joining ULIS

Earlier this year, BCLC reiterated its responsibility to players by announcing that it has become a member of the United Lotteries for Integrity in Sports. ULIS was formerly known as the Global Lottery Monitoring System. Now, the BCLC is the third Canadian entity to join, after Loto Québec and Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation.

Source: Pawliw, Brendan “BCLC says province ahead of the game on restrictions to online gambling adsMyBulkleyLakesNow, September 8, 2023

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Yolina has followed closely the latest development on the Canadian gaming scene over the past years, monitoring the land-based, lottery, and online offerings up for grabs. The dynamic nature of the local lottery and casino fields, as well as the opportunities lying ahead of Canada fire her enthusiasm for what is to come. A sports betting enthusiast, in her spare time Yolina could be found in her natural habitat – turning the pages of biographies and catching up on the latest stand-up comedy podcasts.