New York Sports Betting Regulator Approves Tougher Advertising Rules
The New York State Gaming Commission has unanimously approved a new set of stricter advertising rules for online sportsbooks in the state.
The new regulations will ban operators from using the terms “free” and “risk-free” when describing sign-up bonuses.
Sportsbooks will be required to refer to the offers as “bonus bets” or “second chance” bets, as is the case in states such as Ohio.
The proposed rules are now subject to a 60-day public comment period, and they will then come into force.
Many of the regulations are designed to protect underage New Yorkers and vulnerable adults that could be susceptible to problem gambling.
They dictate that companies “shall not allow, conduct or participate in any advertising, marketing or branding for sports wagering that is aimed at persons under the wagering minimum age.”
That includes any broadcast, cable, radio, print, or digital communications where the “reasonably foreseeable percentage of the composition of the audience” is mostly persons under the wagering minimum age.
It also states that wagering shall not be promoted in college news publications or on campuses.
“After one year [of legal online sports betting], it is obvious that the introduction of legal online sports wagering has been a net positive for people in New York,” said New York State Gaming Commission chair Brian O’Dwyer. However, the commission is also cognizant that, along with the success, comes the potential for problem gambling.”
One recent bill introduced in January seeks to ensure New York’s problem gambling hotline number (1-877-8-HOPENY) is placed on all sports betting ads, as is the case in Ohio.
Another, introduced by Democratic Rep. Paul Tonko, would treat gambling like cigarettes and ban all broadcast ads.