The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has warned its licensed operators of the dangers of accepting wagers on TV programs and other novelty betting markets.
In a letter sent to licensees this week, the UKGC noted that there had been “repeated instances” of operators offering betting markets on pre-recorded TV shows such as the Great British Bake Off and Strictly Come Dancing, after which “media reports emerge that suggest there are issues of integrity.”
The UKGC goes on to say that much of this media reporting “appears to have originated from the operators themselves,” as these reports generally involve operator claims of having “over-exposed their liability or identified integrity concerns tenuously linked” to the subject of the prop bets.
The UKGC says such claims are damaging not only to the content creators and the general public, but the suggestion of shenanigans also harms “the wider perception of gambling in Great Britain.”
The UKGC says the ubiquity of social media means the outcome of these prop bets “is likely to be known to an ever-expanding group of consumers before the result is formally announced.” As such, UK-licensed operators need to demonstrate “a robust management of the associated risks” in order to fulfill their licensing requirements.
If this public shaming proves insufficient, the UKGC’s letter closes by warning its licensees that if it becomes aware that operators are failing to uphold its standards, it will “commence license reviews with a view to exercising our formal regulatory powers on both the operator and the [Personal Management License holder responsible for marketing].”