The AFL code has listened to news media, knockers, parents, players, media commentators, politicians and just about every other demo and cross section of Australian society and decided that they will make an effort to have their gambling advertising done more "responsibly." Just exactly how and what is involved remains to be fully disclosed, but the early signs are very encouraging. Media Man and Gambling911 probe responsible betting Aussie Rules style...
AFL CEO top dog Andrew Demetriou advises the code is rather concerned about the level of gambling advertising in and around the great game and is aiming to make promotions more responsible.
Advertisements of gambling are a dime a dozen in and near venues, during television and radio broadcasts, in magazines (including their own) newspapers and on websites, once again - including their own.
Demetriou advised the league, which has deal with betting agencies such as Tabcorp and James Packer 50% owned Betfair so the game's integrity can be maintained, would look to make wagering advertising and the like less obtrusive.
A Media Man spokesperson said "At present AFL betting ads and promos are pretty impossible to miss and quite a dear in headlights situation. Blind Freddy wouldn't miss the gambling promos. We think its a good thing that they water down the ads and promos. A lot of punters have already signed up, but of course there's always going to be more. It's about striking the balance and being responsible".
Demetriou said "Obviously they've got to advertise and we'd like to see if we can explore ways of doing it more responsibly and a bit more sensitively, and I don't think that's an uncommon view. It's everywhere. You only have to pick up a newspaper and it's there, watch television and it's there, it's on our website. It's going to be there. It's a matter of whether we look at ways we can try and do it a bit more responsibly."
Demetriou threw water on the suggestions the broadcasting rights arrangement would be announced at some stage on Friday and said there remained no deadline for an agreement to be reached.
"There's no cut-off. We have broadcast rights partners until the end of 2011 and it's only April. We've still got eight months. I don't like to give timelines because in my experience, they end up being longer than you predict. That's okay. We're having good, constructive dialogue, it's very positive, heading in the right direction but there's no rush."
Poached Sydney media man James "Man Of War" (MM tag) Warburton has been quizzed in court over the past week about his defection from Channel Seven to Network Ten, and the AFL broadcast rights have also been discussed in the court sessions.
A Media Man spokesperson joked "James and legal eagles, always remember, its better to make love than war, but as our LA friend Elvira said 'All is fair in love and war', and she told the world this at one of the very first WrestleMania's. In the world of news media its often a case of there being little no go signs as the stakes are that high. We think Warburton and the legal eagles have earned a relaxing weekend. Hopefully the focus can get back on quality football matches and not on websites, betting or legal aspects. Av a good weekend, work hard and play harder".
As always, know the odds, bet with your head, not over it, and have fun. Good luck.
*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911
*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming.
*The writer owns shares in Network Ten
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