The likelihood that fairytale based gambling games could be appealing to children has made authorities ban such games on gambling website called Fairytale Legends and Fairies Forest.
Three games – Fairytale Legends Red Riding Hood, Fairytale Legends Hansel and Gretel, and Fairies Forest were promoted in the m88.com website in January. Animated images of a wolf, a pixie and a fairy in a forest are featured in the games.
The complaint against the content of three advertisements were made by the Campaign for Fairer Gambling. The promoters of the website – ProgressPlay, trading as m88.com, modified the ads and removed all images of fairies and “any other unsuitable character and made the game accessible only by logging in to their account by users.
However, m88.com said that the advertisements could appear on other websites that are run by other gambling operators because a third-party software company had produced the games.
According to advertising rules in the UK, ads for gambling should not be of such a nature that it could likely attract children or young people particularly when such ads are reflective of being associated with the culture of the youth. The interim action that was taken by m88.com as a reaction to the complaint was applauded by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).
Little Red Riding Hood formed the basis for the Fairytale Legends Red Riding Hood gambling game and comprised of an animated picture of a wolf and a fairy while a moonlit forest with gameplay stars and gambling coins was the basic elements of the advertisements for the Hansel and Gretel game, the ASA noted.
It said: “We considered that fairies were highly popular with young children, particularly young girls. Furthermore, we noted that the wolf was heavily stylised with exaggerated facial features and included a long muzzle, big eyes and a prominent nose.
“We considered that the physical appearance of the wolf resembled similar characters from films and TV programmes aimed at under-18s, particularly children.”
An animated image of a fairy in a forest that had brightly coloured flowers around the name of the game were showed in the Fairies Forest game. The ASA ruled that the advertisements must not appear in the current format after concluding that all three games have the potential to be attractive and appealing to children.
Similar reasons were cited in another ruling in relation to another set of complaints by Fairer Gambling to ban six games that appeared on the fun88.co.uk and letou.co.uk websites. Those game showed animated images of birds, a young girl and a dragon, a pixie, a castle and a princess, a girl with long blonde hair, and a polar bear wearing a Santa hat, a polar bear cub, two penguins and a rabbit – all of which can be associated with multiple fables and stories liked by children
(Adapted from TheGuardian.com)