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The Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) of UK ruled against Broadway Gaming in a case associated with its ‘Rehab Bingo’ brand. A single complaint triggered the ASA to challenge whether the name Rehab Bingo “condoned socially irresponsible gambling behaviour that could lead to financial, social or emotional harm”.

The ASA also excogitated whether the brand Rehab Bingo suggests that “gambling could provide an escape from personal problems”.

Rehab Bingo was launched by the Rehab Group Charity to back up its own activities by fundraising.

In its evaluation, ASA cited the Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) code that states ads must not condone or encourage gambling behaviour that is socially irresponsible or could lead to financial, social or emotional harm.

The name Rehab Bingo appeared throughout the brand’s site, RehabBingo.co.uk, while a paid-for search advert on Google also stated ‘Join Official Rehab Bingo Now’.

Though  ASA acknowledged Rehab Bingo was launched by a charity to raise funds, and the term ‘rehab’ was linked with treatment and care to help those suffering from physical or mental illnesses, using  the term ‘rehab’ in the context of gambling, where players are susceptible to addiction, is  “socially irresponsible”.

Furthermore,  ASA ruled that the term ‘Rehab Bingo’ suggested online bingo was a form of rehab that could be used to alleviate personal problems, thus placing both the brand and adverts in breach of the CAP Code.

Consequently, ASA ordered Broadway not to use the term ‘rehab’ in the context of gambling, and also ruled that the ads must not appear in their current form.

In December last year, Broadway was also fined £100,000 (€112,800/$139,500) for featuring “misleading advertisements” on five of its gambling sites, including Rehab Bingo.


Source: European Gaming Media and Events