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Ladbrokes Jake Paul tweet banned for appealing to minors

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has determined that a tweet by Ladbrokes featuring Jake Paul may have attracted the attention of individuals under the age of 18.

The tweet in question, which was promoted by Ladbrokes, was posted in February 2023. It contained an image of Jake Paul after his defeat by Tommy Fury, accompanied by the caption, “So, we’ve got to ask the question… What’s next for Jake Paul? Vote here now.”

The tweet included a poll with options such as “Win the re-match,” “Head to the MMA,” “Return to YouTube,” and “Join the WWE.”

The ASA raised concerns regarding whether the ad violated its code by featuring an individual who could strongly appeal to individuals under the age of 18.

Ladbrokes responded to the investigation by stating that there was no call to action for any gambling-related products or services. They also argued that since Twitter ensures that ads by gambling companies are age-gated, they had not violated the code. The tweet had specifically targeted users aged 25 or older.

However, despite Ladbrokes’ claims, the ASA ruled that:

Advertisers should provide evidence that they have identified individuals or characters who are generally known outside the context of an ad and have used appropriate data and information sources to determine their level of appeal to individuals under the age of 18. Since the ad appeared on a platform where individuals under the age of 18 could potentially view it, it was required to comply with this rule.

The ASA considered boxing to be a sport primarily appealing to adults and not highly appealing to individuals under the age of 18. While Jake Paul had recently turned to boxing, they believed he was primarily known for his YouTube videos and had a significant following on social media. Due to his prominence on YouTube, the ASA considered him to have a high profile in the sport and outside of it.

The ASA also acknowledged that Paul had approximately 3 million underage followers on social media and had appeared on a Disney show, making him easily recognisable to individuals under the age of 18.

In conclusion, the ASA determined that the ad was irresponsible and violated the Code. Ladbrokes has been cautioned that the ad must not be displayed again, and any future marketing must not feature individuals who may appeal to minors.

The ad breached the Gambling rules (16.1, 16.3, and 16.3.12) of CAP Code (Edition 12).

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