An online casino game themed after the popular board game, Monopoly, has seen an advertisement involving the title banned by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA). The regulator was concerned that the mascot of the board game, Rich Uncle Pennybags, being used in the ad could be appealing to children.
The ASA ruled that the advertisement, one that appeared on the Mirror Online website, was in breach of their code. In the regulations, gambling ads must not be created with an appeal to young people. The ad ban comes at the same time as concern is growing over the amount of gambling information that children are exposed to. Concern centers around ads on television, computer games, social media, apps and more.
According to The Guardian…
The ASA has not released their ruling yet, but it is understood that the regulator spoke with Entertaining Play, the group behind the game, that the advertisement must not appear again.
Bishop of St Albans, Right Rev, Dr Alan Smith, spoke out in approval of the ruling stating the game is one beloved by young people and the cartoon logo of the game would appeal to children.
Entertaining Play has responded to the ban of the ad by the Authority. They feel that the character of Mr. Monopoly, or Rich Uncle Pennybags, is not likely something that is attractive to children. The company stated that the character is dressed in adult clothing and does not exaggerate features or mimic the style of a cartoon character that is currently featured in programming for kids.
The company pointed out as well that they take steps to ensure that their advertising targets only those who are 18 years of age or older. The Mirror Online spoke to the ASA as well, stating that they did not feel that the ad would appeal to children and they included the label that read 18+.
According to the entity, there is no way that it can be ensured that anyone under 18 years of age would not see the ad and it is not considered one that complies with code.