UPDATE 2 May 27: Why won’t PM Gillard close the loophole which allows gambling ads during sports broadcasts in children’s viewing time? Extracts from her doorstop transcript:
JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, if you want to get rid of the influence of gambling in sport, why don’t you go as far as to ban any gambling related advertisements even through half time onward?
PM: Well we considered that but the proposal that we’re announcing today, we believe, gets the balance right between protecting the community from gaming and the influence of gaming and making sure that there is an appropriate revenue stream for broadcast rights for our sporting codes.
People want to watch great sporting matches on TV. Obviously that’s got to stack up as an economic model for broadcasters, so we believe that what we’ve announced today gets that balance right…
We’ve needed to get the balance right between that and the economic proposition that brings those great matches to our screens.
And what that means is it’s got to stack up for the broadcasters to pay the money to the codes to have access to the game, to put it on TV, so you and I can sit there and watch it.
We think we’ve got the balance right because people know when half time is, they know when, if they’re watching AFL, quarter time and three-quarter time are.
That means if you’re sitting there and you don’t want to watch any gambling advertisements, then have a chat amongst yourselves, go and get a drink, have a little wander around, settle back in for the next section of play.
You can watch every moment of the match and not see a gambling ad and not hear any reference to live odds.
Margo, UPDATE 1 May 26: Here are some key documents in the latest Government attempt to make this issue go away. First, thanks to Fairfax Media Press Gallery journalist Jonathan Swan (@jonathanvswan), for a background paper given to journos on Sunday morning, then the apparent backdown by ALP backbencher Stephen Hones on his pledge to seek Caucus approval for a private members bill to ban gambling ads during sports broadcasts in kids time. The PM’s official statement, issued later on Sunday to accompany her doorstop announcement, follows.
The government’s policy is so minimalist the gambling and TV industry have rushed to say yes to the PM’s get out of jail free card. Note there is no ad ban, even in childrens’ viewing time.
All promotions of odds by gambling companies and commentators will be banned during the broadcast of live sports matches, under new rules.
The Gillard Government has demanded that Australia’s broadcasters amend their broadcasting codes in the following ways to ensure a reduction in the promotion and advertising of gambling during sport:
• All promotion of betting odds on broadcast media will be prohibited during live sports matches. This includes by gambling companies and commentators.
• All generic gambling broadcast advertisements will be banned during play. Advertisements of this sort would only be allowed before or after a game; or during a scheduled break in play, such as quarter-time and half-time or the end of a set.
• Banner adverts, sponsorship logos, and other broadcast promotions must not appear during play. Read the rest of this entry »