UK gambling regulator, Twitter team to lessen gambling exposure


uk-gambling-commission-twitter-partnerThe UK’s gambling regulator is teaming up with Twitter to ensure people can avoid unwanted exposure to gambling come-ons on social media.

On Wednesday, the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) announced that it had partnered with Twitter to “create guidance” for users who want to avoid gambling-related content. Twitter is the first social media heavy to have partnered with the UKGC on this issue, possibly because Mark Zuckerberg is too busy trying to get Donald Trump re-elected.

A lot of the advice being offered is the stuff that Billie Eilish would find ‘duh’ worthy, like turning off notifications or using Twitter’s mute feature to block certain words or accounts. For anyone who needs instructions on that sort of thing, the full UKGC guidance can be read here.

Meanwhile, the UKGC has also been busy with its usual job: imposing punitive financial penalties on gambling operators. The latest to get a taste of the UKGC’s sting are the seven on-course racecourse bookmakers who were caught accepting wagers from an underage undercover ‘test purchaser’ at last year’s Royal Ascot.

The names of the offending bookies have yet to be publicized but the Guardian reported Monday that the UKGC planned to impose financial penalties equal to 2.5% of each individual bookmaker’s annual gross profit. The bookmakers reportedly have until the end of this week to argue that a lesser sum would be more appropriate.

Federation of Racecourse Bookmakers director Robin Grossmith revealed that one of the affected bookies was looking at a penalty of £7,600 for accepting a £5 wager from the jailbait bettor. Grossmith pointed out that the UKGC had yet to impose a 2.5% gross revenue penalty on a betting giant like William Hill, which he noted would amount to “tens of millions of pounds.” For the record, the UKGC’s highest penalty to date was £7.8m, which was imposed on 888 Holdings in August 2017.

Anyone looking for a little digital venting can offer to take part in the UKGC’s new survey, which seeks feedback on how it should redesign its website. Be advised: answers suggesting ‘more boobs’ are likely to be ignored.