The Danish Gambling Authority (Spillemyndigheden) exhorted operators to be careful in using misleading words such as ‘free‘ in their advertising promotions. The country’s gambling regulator sent out a strong warning to gambling operators pointing out that the continued use of the word ‘free’ is a direct violation of the Danish Marketing Practices Act which explicitly states that turnovers are not needed in giving reward offerings.
Licensed gambling operators were also reminded that they should adhere to the Danish Executive Orders on Online Casino which is section 20(1)(1) and Betting which is section 19(1)(1) which stated that these freebie offers should explicitly enumerate the terms and actual conditions directly beside it.
Spillemyndigheden released its statement through its official website early in the week. The gambling watchdog also referred to a statement released by Consumer Ombudsman who had earlier addressed this issue in early 2016. The Ombudsman had pointed out that the word ‘free‘ is deceiving players because the bonus promotion necessitates a turnover stipulation or affects the winning chances.
For example, if a local operator will have a promotion giving a customer 50 free spins in exchange for a required deposit of at least $10, then it is a clear violation as there is no real free spins involved.
This reminder also extends to wordings such as ‘free of charge,’ ‘free bets‘ and ‘free spins‘ which further mislead players who think that the promotion does not require anything to be done from their side but in reality they will have to make a contribution to make use of the bonus.
Spillemyndigheden reiterated that gambling operators should do away with the turnover requirement and that there should be no reduction in chances of winning, if they keep insisting on using these misleading words in their advertisements.
Emergence Of A Fresh Code Of Conduct
This new push from the Danish Gambling Authority is setting the stage for the implementation of a new Denmark Code of Conduct which will regulate the market. Earlier this year, reports surfaced that both online and land-based operators have given their word on adhering to a voluntary code that will control their current mode advertising for the safety of their clients.
This Code of Conduct will be implemented on July 1, 2019, and will seek to shield children and susceptible individuals from the risks that are associated with constant exposure to gambling. It also frowns upon gambling ads that show it as a tool to help people suffering from financial difficulties. There will also be a limit imposed on the number of gambling commercials shown on television and through social media.