Gambling brands still advertise a lot on IP-infringing websites. 25% of all branded ads on such illegal sites come from the gambling industry.
So says White Bullet, a company which protects intellectual property rights (IPR) and tracks their infringement. According to them, this percentage is by far the largest, compared to ads in other sectors.
To put it simply:
By advertising on such sites, brands in the casino industry support IP infringement.
Of course, it’s not a deliberate choice by the gambling companies. Most of them are likely doing this unknowingly or by accident.
Such a misplacement of their adverts, however, increases traffic to the sites where these web ads appear. This usually involves torrent sites, platforms which broadcast pay-TV sports matches and similar criminal content.
Ad Statistics on IPR-Breaching Websites
The tracking company that provided us with the data tracked top 5,000 sites that infringe intellectual property rights. This was done on a global scale. Plus, specific attention was paid to the exact content of the ads.
Thanks to that, they could tell what kind of brands and markets the adverts promote. Here’s the online advertisement data related to the gambling sector in 2018 Q4 you need to know:
🔖 – Find more data in White Bullet’s Q4 2018 Report.
This is a huge number, when compared to the other sectors. Where gambling constitutes 62% of all branded ads on piracy sites, only 14% of ads link to the arts and entertainment industries. All the other sectors comprise of only 7 or less per cent.
These numbers apply to the European market as a whole. Obviously, the statistical
values differ by country, depending on the local laws, visitor traffic and other variables.
Situation in the UK
In the UK, the marketing campaigns in the remote gambling sector have already been a popular topic lately. For example, many brands have just recently agreed to ban their TV ads during sports broadcasts.
This was done in hopes of reducing problem gambling, which remains a serious threat to the society, despite a lowering number of addicts.
In addition, it’s been revealed in recent weeks that some adverts attract kids to online casinos. In fact, commercials both on TV and online were revealed to have a similar effect.
Casino Advertising on Piracy Sites
In light of all the recent news about the marketing campaigns within the industry, this newest revelation doesn’t look good. On top of it all, the gambling industry is the main culprit in advertising on illegal platforms.
Indeed, the European Commission (EC) is right to distrust the gambling industry when it comes to IPR. For this reason, the EC, which is trying to fight such illegal activity, will encourage casinos to be more careful.
The regulator is using certain tools to stop reputable brands from advertising on suspicious domains. However, it’s obvious that their current measures aren’t entirely effective yet.
While we don’t think the situation will quickly change in Europe, the UK is a different matter. When considered alone, the United Kingdom’s gambling sector is in a much better situation.
UKGC’s Stance on Marketing & Intellectual Property Rights
In the UK, the UKGC’s role in protecting copyrighted and trademarked content is important due to:
- The official advertisement rules
- Joint campaigns of the UKGC & Police
- High quality of industry regulation
1. Official Marketing Rules
On one hand, neither the UK Gambling Commission nor CAP regulates this particular issue. However, IPR infringement was addressed indirectly by warning casinos against advertising on file-sharing sites in the past.
🔖 – Here are the official advertising rules and regulations for gambling firms in the country.
2. Working with Police
On the other hand, illegally streaming, copying, distributing or selling IP is certainly a crime, regardless of the market. If it wasn’t, Police wouldn’t have separate units dedicated to intellectual property crime (PIPCU).
In fact, the UKGC and PIPCU collaborated in 2017, to reveal a number of casino brands which breach IP rights. In a single year, their joint efforts managed to reduce such harmful marketing by 87%.
3. UKGC Promotes Responsible Conduct
Finally, let’s not forget the fact that UKGC is a strict regulator which always protects the gambler. Thus, online punters are getting used to safe, transparent and trustworthy gambling brands.
Such brand reputation is incompatible with reckless marketing and ignorance of concepts like IPR. Meanwhile, many other European countries barely regulate gambling firms at all.
Hence, it’s more likely that socially oblivious behaviour like promotion of IPR infringing entities will happen outside of the UK’s gambling market than within it.
Connection Between Casinos & IP-Infringing Sites?
There’s an enormous involvement in irresponsible communications among casinos, as revealed by White Bullet. Despite this, most gambling businesses have no links to torrent or similar websites.
After all, having such links could only harm the business which is trying to earn profit by legal means. Such online gambling businesses are built on user trust, security and good reputation.
Meanwhile, platforms which share unauthorised content are illegal. They have no licences or approvals from official bodies, which places them at odds with the gambling industry. As already mentioned, most of the ads within that 25% are accidental.
Thus, with this issue rising to the surface, the reputable brands should end these campaigns immediately. Otherwise, you should definitely be suspicious of the brands which remain involved.