In Responsible Gambling Race To The Top, France Steals A March On Team GB

France has stolen a march on its perennial UK rival by publishing a draft of a progressive Responsible Gambling iGaming advertising decree, while the issue has still to leave the British parliamentary talking shop.

The putative decree is the latest legislative move by French authorities to curb gambling harm and protect consumers, especially the young.

Earlier this month, the national gaming regulator (Autorité Nationale des Jeux) imposed new gambling sponsorship regulations and said it would instigate a so-called “role model ban” by nixing the use of a sportsperson’s image to promote gambling.

“Surveys have shown that the previous health messages on advertisements have become less effective and need to be adapted in their content and manner of display to the new modes of advertising,” affirmed a French government source.

“While for a majority of players, gambling practices remain casual or recreational, studies show an upward trend of excessive practices.

“With the development of the online gambling offer and a competitive market, advertising and promotional strategies for gambling have also developed.”

France has around one million at-risk gamblers, with some 400,000 experiencing serious harm

According to a recent study by the French Public Health Agency, 73 percent of the nation’s gamblers are in favour of warning messages about the dangers of gambling addiction in adverts.

According, the draft decree, at core, requires all ads to feature a prominent warning message about excessive, or pathological, online gambling.

If enacted, the decree will also feature information about the avenues of help available to people suffering from gambling-related harm.

Responsible Gambling warnings should cover at least 15 percent of an online advert to ensure proper impact and have an embedded five-second anti-addiction message at the end, the French government source told iGF.

It’s estimated that France, population just under 68 million, has around one million at-risk gamblers, of which some 400,000 may be experiencing serious harm.

When passed, the decree will give online advertisers 30-days to comply with the new rules.

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