YouTube Has Banned Gambling Advertisements From Its Homepage
YouTube has banned gambling advertisements from its masthead ad slot, which appears at the top of the website and app’s homepage.
From this week, ads related to gambling, elections and other political content, alcohol, and drugs will not be shown on YouTube’s masthead, which the company says is “the most prominent Google advertising placement available to advertisers”. Google’s customer support site offers more details on the prohibited ad categories, explaining that the gambling-related content ban encompasses offline gambling, online gambling, online non-casino games, and social casino games too.
Meanwhile, the political ban covers all assets related to elections or politics, the alcohol ban prohibits all assets that depict or reference alcohol, ads that promote the sale of alcohol, and branding or informational ads focusing on alcoholic beverages. Finally, the drug ban covers all assets that depict or reference prescription drug terms.
In an email seen by Reuters, a Google spokesperson said: “We regularly review our advertising requirements to ensure they balance the needs of both advertisers and users. We believe this update will build on changes we made last year to the masthead reservation process and will lead to a better experience for users.”
Gambling Website Stake.com To Launch In UK With Aspire Global
Meanwhile, online casino and sports betting website Stake.com has partnered with operator Aspire Global to launch in the United Kingdom as part of its plan for global expansion. Under the partnership, Stake’s UK-facing website will be operated by Aspire Global, including the site’s base platform, its sportsbook, game selection, and all other managed services, Aspire Global’s press release reports.
Tsachi Maimon, the CEO of Aspire Global, said in a statement: “We are thrilled to partner with such a strong fast-growing brand as Stake.com which provides an innovative gaming experience. This partnership is yet another proof of the strength and attractiveness in our complete iGaming offering. We look forward to supporting Stake.com in further strengthening their position as a fast-growing, innovative iGaming company in the large UK market.”
Mladen Vuckovic, the CEO at Stake.com, added: “When we planned our expansion to the regulated UK market, we searched for a partner who can provide the entire iGaming offering and is renowned for its technology, expertise, and products. Aspire Global met our high standards and will offer our players a unique experience across multiple verticals. We look forward to continuing our expansion together with Aspire Global.”
The news comes after Aspire Global announced a partnership with Ireland’s brick-and-mortar Funfair Casino. Under this partnership, Funfair Casino will launch an online website via Aspire Global, offering all of the operator’s services with Funfair Casino branding. The services include games, customer support, VIP services, promotions, risk management, and more.
UK Government Announces Increase To Gambling License Fees
Also this week, the UK Government’s DCMS (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport) has announced an increase to gambling license fees across the entire gambling industry.
The DCMS announced the change in its response to a consultation that launched on January 29, which examined the funding structure of the UK Gambling Commission and a proposal that license fees should be increased to help the Commission cover its costs and address regulatory challenges.
According to CasinoBeats, the DCMS concluded that increased investment was required to improve the Gambling Commission’s staff training and expertise as a gambling regulatory body, and as a result, the DCMS has announced an increase in gambling license fees, starting from October 1, 2021.
The changes include a 55% increase in annual fees for remote operating licenses and a 60% increase in all UK Gambling Commission license application fees. In addition, the DCMS has announced changes to simplify the Commission’s fees system by removing discounts for combined and multiple licenses. From April 1, 2022, the annual fees for non-remote operating licenses will also increase by 15%.
The DCMS has said it faced objections to the increase in license fees but argued that the UK gambling industry’s licensing fees have not changed since 2009 despite the UK Gambling Commission’s higher running costs.
Microgaming Partners With DoubleUp Group
Meanwhile, leading game provider Microgaming has announced a content partnership with operator DoubleUp Group, which launched last year in the Netherlands and has expanded rapidly into a full Malta-based team.
Under the new content agreement, Microgaming will provide its entire game selection as well as content from its partnered studios to DoubleUp Group’s new flagship brand, Doggo Casino, which promises a premier gaming experience designed to be super-intuitive for players.
Andrew Clucas, the Chief Operations Officer at Microgaming, said in a statement: “DoubleUp Group is entirely focused on providing a retention-focused player experience which makes Microgaming the perfect partner for them. The Doggo Casino audience will not only have instant access to our new and exclusive content but also hit titles from our awesome partner studios. DoubleUp Group has a great future ahead and we are excited to be part of their journey.”
Ale Rallo, the Managing Director of DoubleUp Group, added: “There are many competing iGaming providers, but Microgaming is the perfect partner for DoubleUp Group’s launch strategy. Microgaming’s mammoth status and unparalleled game portfolio ensures player engagement and longevity. Together, we’ll create an enviable online casino.”
The news comes as Microgaming continues to expand its player reach around the world by striking content agreements with companies such as BLOX in Italy and Solverde in Portugal. It’s also been expanding its partnered game studios after announcement partnerships with Gong Gaming Technologies and Gold Coin Studios.