Regulator tightens restrictions on gambling advertising during live sports streaming

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has released its new rules restricting how streaming platforms can advertise gambling during sports events.

The rules include e-sports and will come into force on September 28. They bring online platforms into line with traditional broadcasters and will see gambling advertising banned during live games between 5am and 8:30pm.


Outside of those hours, gambling advertising can be shown during stoppages. At all times, a blackout period of 30 minutes before and after games applies where commentators aren’t permitted to promote odds and gambling representatives are forbidden from appearing around the venues.

An ACMA spokesperson told Mumbrella there will be exemptions during simulcasts – as those would already have to be compliant with the television broadcasting rules.

“Online live sport provided by a broadcaster will be exempt from the online rules if the stream of content (including any advertising) is identical to the broadcast transmission and is provided simultaneously, or almost simultaneously, with the broadcast transmission.

“This exemption recognises that the broadcast transmission is subject to the relevant rules in the broadcasting codes of practice.”

The exemption is based on the assumption that in this case, the responsibility rests with the original broadcaster.

If the online stream is not identical to the transmitted broadcast, it will be subject to the new online rules.

There are also exemptions for Australian-licensed wagering services, with ACMA saying these businesses already have to comply with the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act (2006) and associated rules. ACMA also noted audiences for these services are watching with the expectation of gambling advertising.

In addition, there may be individual exemptions granted, subject to conditions, on a case-by-case basis.

ACMA chair, Nerida O’Loughlin said in a statement: “This is the first time that online services streaming live sport have been required to comply with gambling advertising restrictions.

“This brings online services in line with television and radio broadcasting services. It creates a safe zone for children and families to watch live sport across a variety of platforms.”


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