Australian Gambling Operators Push Sportsbook Texts

Australian gambling operators are once again in hot water with anti-gambling campaigners. Despite restrictions on TV ads and other real-world promotions, gambling operators are now using smartphone text messages for promotions. Advertising materials are fast becoming too regulated but that hasn’t stopped bookmakers from targeting sports fans. By sending private messages, it appears that bookies have found a different way to push their services.

According to a study by CQUniversity, sending private text messages is particularly effective for increasing bets taken. In addition, the rise in popularity of smartphones has given Australian gambling operators “grounds to promote their services”. Whether or not they will be restricted will likely be brought up in future government talks. After all, there could be a workaround for people who have unsubscribed to still receive texts.

Australian Gambling Operators Push Sportsbook Texts

Texts More Effective than Emails

Using the research by CQUniversity, ABC News reports that texts are more effective in making punters active on gambling services. During the study, it was revealed that, on days when people received texts from Australian gambling operators, they were more active. They also reportedly placed more bets following the messages. ABC News did some further research by asking 98 individuals who placed sports bets and 104 who used racebooks to complete daily surveys.

Results show that, during the seven-day period, each sports bettor received 2.3 texts and 3.7 emails on average. However, horse race bettors received 4.3 texts and 6.5 emails. Conversely, many of the messages came as part of regular promotions to most customers. On the other hand, some messages were worded to seem like a personalised offer to an individual. While there seems to be a more positive trend for Australian gambling operators using texts, it’s not substantiated yet.

Statistics for Australian Gambling Operators Unconfirmed

The goal of the ABC News study appears to be checking the correlation between gambling activity and how many messages are received. In addition, they hoped to see whether punters placed wagers within 24 hours of the messages. According to expectations, the number of messages received will increase in the following months because the promotions are relatively inexpensive to run.

Still, Australian gambling operators will need to tread carefully with current sentiments towards the industry. More so, there will likely be strict measures for the promotions added to existing laws in states that don’t allow bonus promotions.

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Gambling Adverts Ban Officially Implemented

Gambling adverts NZThe Gambling adverts ban has come into effect in the UK. This means that no gambling ads will be shown on television during sports matches before 9 pm. The ban, which excludes televised gambling adverts on horse racing, was announced by stakeholders in the UK gambling industry last year.  This was a voluntary decision from the gambling industry stakeholders. The decision was prompted by gambling addiction statistics among teenagers last year which rose drastically.

The Gambling Adverts ban is being implemented to decrease gambling among children. This ban is being introduced at a time when sports betting will increase as a result of the start of the football season. The Ashes, which have already commenced, will be the first sports event that will be affected by the new regulation. It is important to note that the ban will only be on televised sports matches. Casino sites will, for now, not be affected by the new regulation that has been set in terms of online adverts.

Gambling Advert Changes

It is not all doom and gloom as gambling adverts will still appear around the pitchside advertising hoardings.  Football t-shirts will also be allowed to advertise sponsorships from gambling firms. This essentially means betting firms will still appear on live sports. The only ban, therefore, will be during breaks and five minutes prior to the match’s commencement and five minutes after the end of a match.

As previously stated, the only exceptions of the ban are horse racing events as well as greyhound races.  Jeremy Wright, former Culture Minister, stated that it is important to protect children and any other vulnerable people in society from any harm that could be caused by gambling.

Gambling Adverts


The gambling act of 2005 will be altered, 12 years after its introduction. The 2005 legislation permitted the gambling industry to advertise on TV. Now, with the introduction of the new gambling advert ban, the Act will have to be relooked.

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Tasmania District is Considering Approving the Sinking Lid Policy

The Tasmania District in New Zealand has drafted a gambling venues policy that is scheduled for public review from August 09. In the draft policy, there is the inclusion of the sinking lid policy for pokie machines. The idea of the sinking lid was first introduced in 2010 together with the capped policy. However, the district decided to go with the capped policy.

According to the sinking lid policy, gambling venues cannot increase their pokie machines. What’s more, the operators will not be allowed to move with the machines when relocating. When they relocate, they will have to surrender the machines licence. The approval of this draft policy comes from the environment and planning committee. The public will have a say about the policy between August 09 and September 13.

tasmania gambling machine sinking policy

The Current Cap Policy

When the cap policy was agreed on, it set the cap at 220 machines. However, the Racing Board venues in New Zealand are unrestricted under this policy. Some individuals are in support of the current cap policy but are against the sinking lid policy. The motivation is that many organisations depended on the funds they receive from the gambling machines operators.

Barry Dowler from the Motueka Community Board and a former councillor said that voluntary organisations such as the one he is part of rely on the funding grants from the gambling machine operators. Should there be any loss of them, it will put unnecessary pressure on everyone, he continued.

There is also a staff report that says the impact of gambling harm affects only a few hundred players in the district. What’s more, the reduction of funding grants or the potential loss will affect the district’s residents.

Government’s Problem Gambling Programs

The Tasmania district is trying to implement these policies to help deal with problem gambling. Last month the New Zealand government announced an NZ$60 million plan to curb problem gambling. The plan includes different problem gambling programs that will be funded over three years. The program will start with the most vulnerable areas and also use them as the pilot areas.

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Poker Machines Spending Up in AU State, Victoria

Poker Machines NZPoker machines spending by Victorian residents increased in the past financial year. In the 2018/19 financial year-end report, it’s revealed that gamblers in the Australian state have lost $2.7 billion. This has become the second-highest losses since the introduction of the Pokies. The report, released by the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation, VCGLR, dictates that Greater Dandenong residents have incurred more losses than other AU states. Every Year in July the VCGLR releases the previous financial year records.

There are other regions are said to be spending $100 million on poker machines annually. The regions that were mentioned were Whittlesea as well as Geelong. According to research that was conducted by gambling researcher at Monash University, Dr Charles Livingstone, the poker machines are intense in areas that seem to be disadvantaged. Dr Livingstone further cemented that pokies were being enjoyed by many as a form of distress.  On average, adults in Victoria have spent around $530, this according to the latest stats.

Who’s to blame for the Poker Machines Problem?

According to Dr Livingstone, the state is reluctant to help with the poker machines problem because it brings in revenue. He stated that there needs to be a change at both federal and state levels. Gaming and Liquor Regulation Minister, Marlene Kairouz, has stated that she is committed to eradicating this problem. While she acknowledged the legitimacy of the gambling industry, she maintained that there are some serious issues that stem from it.

Poker Machines NZ 2019

What can be done?

The losses incurred by kiwis are just one part of the pokies problem arising in the region. Reverend Tim Costello of the Alliance for Gambling Reform stated that the state needs to take problem gambling as a public health issue. He stated that playing poker machines results in compulsive gambling.

There is much more damage than pokies can cause than just increased losses that would have ripple effects across society. Therefore, treating it as a national crisis is the way to go, according to Rev. Costello.

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Hamilton City Council sets SkyCity Application Hearing

Hamilton City Council ThreatsThe Hamilton City Council will be holding a public hearing on the topic of SkyCity’s expanded pokie selection “later this year”. This announcement follows many other councils’ decisions on gaming machines in recent months. SkyCity Hamilton is one of six land-based casinos in New Zealand, with a license valid for the next few years. Currently, their recent application for more poker machines and replacing three blackjack tables will be up for public debate. However, some groups affected by the decision have made claims about the city’s mayor making threats towards the community.

The hearing has been confirmed by Chief Gambling Commissioner, Graeme Reeves, who will sit in with five other agencies. While a date has not been set, concerns have been raised over the legal standpoint of the Hamilton City Council’s opposition to the expansion. Public submissions have already closed on the matter.

Hamilton City Council Files against SkyCity Application

According to reports, Mayor Andrew King has threatened some community projects with less funding ahead of the hearing. Allegedly, Mayor King was addressing the Chiefs Rugby Club, Hamilton Waikato Tourism, and the Northern Districts Cricket Association when he warned that going against the Hamilton City Council may cancel council funding for any groups. Since then, Mayor King has denied the claims of an ultimatum.

Reportedly, the Hamilton City Council is spending roughly NZ$150 00 to oppose the application filed by SkyCity. They want to replace three blackjack tables with 60 poker machines on the casino floor. Since this will affect the public, they are legally required to file an application and await a hearing after public submissions. Several community groups and affected organisations will also be part of the hearing.

Hamilton City Council Against Pokies


Mayor’s Conduct is a Concern

Considering the alleged threats and concerns, the Gambling Commission has reached out to SkyCity. Despite the allegations, the company has revealed that the public hearing would proceed. As a result, the Hamilton City Council has revealed that they received a letter authorising their appearance at the hearing. Nevertheless, the gambling regulator has not sent any correspondence about Mayor King.

Members of the public are also authorised to attend. Keep visiting Kiwi Casinos for updates on this story.

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