Mr Green’s advertisement banned from broadcasting
The UK’s Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) has banned a television advert from Scandinavian online casino operator Mr Green after ruling it was misleading for not making clear what the claim in the advertisement referred to.
The advert featured a voice-over that said: “Mr Green. Mr Green. Where will he take you today? From Arctic Siberia to outer space. Medieval forest to sunny Miami. Do battle in imperial Rome when you play Victorious.”
At the same time, on-screen small text stated: “Offer valid for 30 days. Must wager 35x bonus to withdraw winnings. Other T&C's apply. No deposit required.”
The small print then disappeared, while the voice-over continued: “Choose from a huge range of Casino games at MrGreen.com”, followed by large on-screen text that said, “20 FREE SPINS ON VICTORIOUS” whilst the voice-over stated, “Join now and get twenty free spins”.
The complainant challenged whether the advert was misleading because it was not clear as to what the claim regarding the ‘35x bonus’ actually referred to.
Mr Green responded by saying the claim related to the free spins offered in the advert and that players had to wager the bonus money received from the free spins 35 times before being allowed to withdraw winnings, wording Mr Green said had been approved by advertising services provider Clearcast.
In addition, Clearcast said it approved the pre-production script with the qualifying disclaimer to appear on-screen at the same time as the ‘20 free spins’ claim in the voice-over.
Although the final advert featured the disclaimer earlier, Clearcast said the fast movement of the advert's background before the claim was stated meant the disclaimer would not have been easily legible if it appeared at the same time.
Clearcast said although the qualifying disclaimer appeared at a different time to the claim, there were no other claims in the advert and the only one that could qualify was the ‘20 free spins’ claim.
Clearcast also said the size of text and length of hold meant the qualifying disclaimer was clearly legible and therefore the advert was not materially misleading.
Although the ASA accepted that the disclaimer did refer to the ‘20 free spins’ claim, the two were not displayed at the same time.
The ASA noted that the background of the advert was a solid colour before the claim was made in the voice-over and on-screen, stating the qualification would have been easily legible on that solid background.
In addition, the on-screen text referred to ‘bonus’ but the ‘20 free spins’ claim did not, which led the ASA to rule that consumers were unlikely to make the connection between the two claims.
The ASA ruled that as it was not clear that the ‘35x bonus’ claim related to the ‘20 free spins’ offer, that qualification was not made clear and concluded the advert was misleading.
The agency ruled that Mr Green must not broadcast the advert in its current form again.