An advert for William Hill has been banned for linking gambling to sexual success.
The advert for the sports betting operator appeared on dating app Tinder in March. Accompanied by a link to the firm’s website, the ad read, “Stuck in the friend zone? You won’t be for much longer if you use this Cheltenham free bet offer.”
According to reports, a Tinder user complained that the advert broke advertising rules by linking online gambling to sexual success.
William Hill argued that the ad suggested users would enter into a relationship with the firm but upon reflection agreed that it could be interpreted differently. The firm also stated that it was not their intention to link gambling to sexual success.
Meanwhile, Tinder said they had published the ad after reviewing it to ensure it was not socially irresponsible, offensive or targeting minors.
The ASA’s Decision
The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) acknowledged that the betting operator had removed the ad but stated that it suggested that customers who gambled would be more likely to develop a friendship into a sexual relationship, linking gambling with sexual success. The organisation then prohibited the ad from appearing again.
In a statement, William Hill said: “We take on board what the ASA have said about this particular advert and have removed it from circulation.”
The news comes after the ASA banned a Paddy Power advert for “glamorising gambling”. The ad in question featured Rhodri Giggs, the brother of former Manchester United player Ryan Giggs, and promoted the betting firm’s rewards program.
In the ad, Giggs told viewers he always “lived a loyal life” while being shown drinking the same drink, visiting the same gym and purchasing the same tea bags. Then, as Giggs begins promoting the firm he’s shown ordering champagne over his usual drink and driving off in a sports car while thanking the sports betting operator.