ETHICAL STANDARDS FOR ADVERTISING AND COMMERCIAL COMMUNICATION OF GAMBLING

The following standards are an integral part of National Ethical Standards for Advertising and Commercial Communications (Ethical Code) adopted by the National Council for Self-Regulation (NCSR). They specify the use of some of the general rules of the thical Code and must be interpreted and applied along with it.

Definition

For the purposes of these ethical standards “gambling” means any game of chance which involves a bet and in which a prize may be won or the money staked may be lost.

Basic principles

The organizers of gambling games in Bulgaria are convinced that:

• the commercial communication is of fundamental importance to free and fair competition;

• most participants in the gambling market in Bulgaria take part responsibly in gambling;

• the commercial communication of lawful gambling is indispensable in order to channel participants to a protected and safe market.

• the advertising and other forms of commercial communication should not only be legal, but decent, honest and truthful.


The pathological addiction to gambling can have serious consequences for the individuals concerned, their surroundings and society as a whole. Recognising this fact, the gambling enterprises registered in Bulgaria undertake to shape the advertising and commercial communication for their products in such a way that it does not promote problematic gambling behaviour. In accepting this obligation, gambling operators are committed to the following principles:

• To prevent the commercial communication of their offerings to be presented in such a way as to be misconstrued as promoting problematic gambling behaviour.

• To prevent commercial communication for their offerings from being addressed/targeted at minors.

• To promote compliance to these principles by all participants in gambling business and to combat the breaches thereof.

Honesty

The commercial communication for gambling shall not:

1.1. Abuse the consumers confidence or exploit their lack of experience or knowledge. In particular, mental or physical weaknesses, age, lack of business acumen, gullibility or financial or social predicaments shall not be exploited.

1.2. Contain untrue or misleading statements, in particular concerning the size and probability of winnings and the terms and conditions of participation.

1.3. Suggest that problematic gambling behaviour can be ruled out by reference to specific gambling offerings or especially small stakes.
1.4. Encourage consumers to regain losses or reinvest winnings.
1.5. Give the impression of financial difficulties being solved by gambling.
1.6. Contain representations and claims that are capable of imparting problematic gambling behaviour and in particular gambling behaviour that is excessive from a financial or social point of view, or that are capable of inciting such behaviour or of making such behaviour appear acceptable.

Social Responsibility

The commercial communication for gambling shall not:

2.1. Suggest that gambling can counter mental disorders and/or psychosocial conflicts, in particular fear or loneliness.

2.2. Present abstinence from gambling in a negative light
2.3. Present participation in gambling as an important part of an individual’s personal lifestyle, as a substitute for social encounters or as a solution to social problems.
2.4. Suggest that participation in gambling is conducive to social success and in particular that it contributes towards improving an individual’s reputation or personal attractiveness.
2.5. Promote or tacitly tolerate punishable or unlawful conduct.
Minors
Commercial communication for gambling shall not:
3.1. Incite minors to participate in gambling or show minors in the act of gambling. No use shall be made of representations or claims of special appeal to minors.
3.2. Be conveyed by media the majority of whose editorial content addresses minors.
3.3. Be shown on sports kits worn by sports teams comprising minors or conveyed in advertising and sponsoring campaigns that are directly related to minors.

3.4. Depict individuals other than those who are and give the impression of being at least young adults.
Adopted by the General Assembly of the National Council for Self-Regulation (NCSR) November 14, 2012