More Than Half of Swedish Population Supports Gambling Advertising Ban



Staff member
May 3, 2008
A new survey report showed that Swedish gambling operators, even though they received a reregulated market just recently, may lose their ability to advertise their gambling products entirely, provided this report is thoroughly investigated by the government.

If the government looks into the survey report in detail, which states that more than half of Swedish population consider gambling dangerous and are against gambling advertising, the online gambling licensees might face a complete ban on advertising. There were already some speculations about Sweden becoming the next online gambling market where gambling advertising will become banned, following the public statements of the Minister of Civil Affairs. Now, these new reports could cause even greater chaos.

The Survey and Its Results

The survey was conducted by Sifo, the market researchers, and showed concerning results. 53% of Swedes consider that gambling advertising should be banned in the country. Other 30% partially agree with this opinion, which only makes the situation for online Swedish operators worse. In case the government takes note of the survey’s results, the future of Swedish gambling may once again receive a blow.

The final results of the survey may look horrible for the operators, but the breakdown of all questions and answers shows even worse results. 76% of Swedes agree entirely that the government and the regulator need to further tighten the rules for gambling advertising, while other 16% are partially concurring with that. These people are basically saying that they don’t mind the ads but the advertising should be moderated. 87% agree in entirety that there are far too much gambling ads in the Swedish media, and an additional 10% partially agree. So the picture is clear: Swedes say either control it and tighten the rules or ban it completely.

Add to the equation the 2018 survey that found the advertising in the gambling industry the least credible among all other business sectors, and predict the outcome. Plus, last month, there was a Quality Index survey where the gambling industry scored significantly weak marks of customer reputation, satisfaction and trust.

Could This Mean the End of Gambling Advertising in Sweden?

All of these results couldn't have appeared at a worst time. The new reregulated online market, which is barely one month old, is already facing so many blows. Not so long ago, Ardalan Shekarabi, the Minister of Civil Affairs has summoned all online gambling licensees, all 69 of them, to sit down and discuss their marketing strategies and activities. The meeting is scheduled to take place, as a matter of fact, on February 14th, so this news will definitely heat things up.

Earlier this month, the Minister of Civil Affairs publically concurred with UK’s rule on banning gambling advertising during live broadcasted sports matches and events and actually suggested that Sweden should follow its lead. In fact, he publically stated last Tuesday that he recognized the Swedes’ frustration and noticed that this frustration is continuously growing, so he repeated last month’s threat of new forthcoming restrictions, provided online licensees don’t demonstrate moderation in their advertising and marketing strategies. The Swedes, he said, are tired of that extremely aggressive marketing, and reminded operators that they have huge reasonability and they need to live up to the requirements and rules.

How Could This Situation Rectify?

One small ray of light for operators is the support by Jenny Nilzon, which is the current CEO of SPER (Swedish Gambling Association). She came to the operators’ defence saying that, even though she understands the Swedes’ frustration, the operators are only doing what they’re told with the newly reregulated online gambling market. She reminds everyone that free competition means that these operators must be able to market their goods, products and services in order to have a fair fight in this ever-growing industry.

She additionally stated her confidence in the industry, saying that the online gambling industry will eventually find the right course and will do as the government says, provided they clarify the blurred definition of what moderate advertising actually means. The new gambling regime is far from explicit on what ‘excessively aggressive marketing’ means. She then threw the ball at media outlets’ court, saying that they can also decide how much gambling ads they consider appropriate and wish to accept.

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