The British public, according to a national poll, broadly supports gambling as a legitimate leisure filled activity. The report was published in a new national poll by GVC, and it coincides with the House of Lords Gambling Industry Committee report. Some 2,000 Britons were surveyed in the month of May 2020, and 80% of regular players readily accept betting as an intractable component of the leisure industry. Almost 2/3 of them are fully in support of legal-age players’ choice to gamble.
The industry infographic found that 7 in 10 people participate in some or other form of gambling. 60% of Britons polled believe in freedom of choice for individuals to decide how and when they gamble, and some 40% of the population are concerned that over-regulation could fuel black market activity. Just 8% of non-gambling individuals were definitely aware of the industry's responsible gaming measures. GVC acts as a socially responsible corporation, which is continually working towards improving player protection policies. While research indicates a lack of awareness among the general public about industry controls, the GVC hopes to communicate what measures it has taken to safeguard players from compulsive gambling activity.
The CEO of GVC, Kenny Alexander had this to say about the release of the report: ‘… The report is a thoughtful and measured contribution to the debate on how to ensure the regulated gambling industry can thrive, provide entertainment and enjoyment for the millions of Britons who like a bet. While there is only a small minority of customers who run into problems, it is important that we put a safety net around them. We fully support the recommendation to bring forward the UK government's review of the Gambling Act and we will play a full and active role in the process.’
Measures implemented by the GVC include:
- UK football venues no longer have in-ground or perimeter advertising (effective July 2019)
- Shirt sponsorships ended in 2019, and a complete season of sponsorship rights was donated to charity
- The entire UK gambling industry no longer features TV adverts around live sports
- The GVC is now privy to a 5-year multi-million pound partnership with Harvard Medical School's Division on Addiction into issues surrounding problem gambling and treatment thereof.
- Voluntary contributions towards education, awareness, and treatment of problem gambling has increased from 0.1% all the way up to 1%, with other major operators following the GVCs lead.
Other measures supported by the GVC include a minimum gambling age of 18+ across-the-board, and measures to increase awareness with youth education programs, along with GamCare and state-school awareness initiatives. The GVC works hard with Big Data to ensure the most up-to-date information in respect of responsible gambling, monitoring of betting behaviour, and intervening to prevent problems from developing. While the GVC is actively working behind-the-scenes, it will communicate its activities to the general public, to ensure that everyone is aware of all the measures that are being implemented to promote safe gambling practices.