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Children Misled by Gambling Ads, GambleAware Report Reveals



GambleAware Raises Concerns: Children Vulnerable to Misleading Gambling Ads

Alert: How Bright, Eye-Catching Gambling Ads Mislead Our Children – In the colorful and loud digital world, children are increasingly exposed to gambling advertisements that are not only engaging but also misleading. GambleAware, a leading gambling harm prevention charity, has unveiled alarming findings regarding how such advertisements affect children, particularly those vulnerable ones with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). This revelation calls for urgent actions to safeguard our youngest and most impressionable citizens.

In-Depth Analysis of the Problem:

GambleAware’s recent research sheds light on a growing concern: bright and engaging gambling ads are particularly captivating to children under 11, those impacted by others’ gambling habits, and those considered vulnerable due to SEND. The study, which involved detailed interviews and interactions with these groups, highlights an unsettling trend where vulnerable children recall gambling ads more frequently and vividly than their peers.

The Grey Area of Gambling and Gaming:

One significant finding of the report is the blurring lines between gambling and gaming. Many gambling platforms use graphics and themes that are strikingly similar to those found in children’s games, making it difficult for young users to distinguish between the two. For instance, some online gambling setups mimic video games to such an extent that even the children recognize the similarity, yet find it hard to label the activity accurately as gambling.

Misunderstood and Misguided:

The research points out that children’s understanding of gambling is often based on outdated notions, such as slot machines and lotteries, and does not encompass the modern realities of online gambling. This misconception is further exacerbated by the “grey area” between gaming and gambling, which confuses not just children but also their caregivers.


Impact on Young Minds:

The saturation of gambling content in children’s online spaces is troubling. From influencers to sports icons, various online personalities inadvertently promote gambling, influencing young minds. Older children in the study expressed a desire for better regulation of such content, while some believed in personal responsibility to assess risks associated with gambling-like activities.

Educational Needs and Recommendations:

The report emphatically calls for comprehensive gambling education that transcends the mere discussion of financial risks. It advocates for a balanced approach that avoids fearmongering yet effectively communicates the diverse harms associated with gambling. There’s a crucial need for educational initiatives that adapt to the evolving nature of gambling and its online manifestations.

GambleAware’s Stance and Actions:

Zoë Osmond, CEO of GambleAware, emphasizes the necessity for stricter regulations on gambling advertisements to shield children from premature exposure to gambling. She advocates for policies that ensure gambling content does not infiltrate spaces frequented by children. This stance is backed by the organization’s continuous efforts to provide support and tools to those affected by gambling harms.


The insights from GambleAware’s report are a clarion call for immediate and decisive action to protect children from the hidden dangers of gambling ads. As digital landscapes evolve, so too must our strategies to safeguard young individuals from the subtle allure of gambling disguised as harmless fun. This involves a collective effort from regulators, educators, and parents to foster environments where children can grow free from the deceptive clutches of gambling.


Andrew, a seasoned specialist in sports writing, joins the Gamingo.News editorial team, enriching our coverage with his profound expertise in sports journalism. His fascination with the sports industry ignited in his university days, where he excelled in collegiate sports analysis, eventually steering him towards the dynamic realm of sports betting and online gaming forums. Armed with a wealth of insight and experience, Andrew now channels his fervor for sports into insightful reporting, offering our readers exclusive updates and in-depth perspectives on the latest online gaming trends.

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