Complaint: 17/393

New Zealand Racing Board, Digital Media - YouTube

Details

Complainants
J. Lynch
advertisers
New Zealand Racing Board
Year
2017
Media
Digital Marketing
Product
Entertainment
Clauses
Decision
Not Upheld
ASA Links
Website Listing
Decision Document

Document





COMPLAINT NUMBER
17/393
COMPLAINANT
J Lynch
ADVERTISER
New Zealand Racing Board
ADVERTISEMENT
New Zealand Racing Board,
Digital Media - YouTube
DATE OF MEETING
14 November 2017
OUTCOME
Not Upheld


SUMMARY

The YouTube advertisement for the TAB's Melbourne Cup season promoted a bonus credit
of $20 from the TAB when new customers opened an account and made an initial deposit to
activate the account.

The Complainant was concerned the advertisement was misleading consumers by using the
term 'deposit' instead of the word 'bet'.

The Complaints Board said the complaint appeared to have arisen from a misinterpretation
of what the promotion was offering in terms of opening an account rather than placing an
actual bet.

The Complaints Board said the advertisement's terminology was technically correct and was
therefore not misleading to consumers.

The Complaints Board ruled the advertisement was not in breach of Principle 2 or 3 of the
Code for Advertising Gaming and Gambling and had been prepared with a high standard of
social responsibility.

The Complaints Board ruled the complaint was Not Upheld.

[No further action required]

Please note this headnote does not form part of the Decision.




COMPLAINTS BOARD
DECISION

The Chair directed the Complainants Board to consider the advertisement with reference to
Principle 2 and Principle 3 of the Code for Advertising Gaming and Gambling. This required
the Complaints Board to consider whether the advertisement was likely to mislead or
deceive consumers, by abusing the trust of or exploiting the lack of knowledge of
consumers. The Complaints Board was also required to consider whether the advertisement
had observed a high standard of social responsibility.

The Complaints Board ruled the complaint was Not Upheld



17/393

The Complaint
The Complainant was concerned the advertisement was misleading consumers by using the
term 'deposit' as an alternative for the word 'bet'. The Complaint said this was disingenuous
and manipulative advertising and does not promote responsible gambling.

The Advertiser's Response
The Advertiser clarified the purpose of the advertisement was to promote the Melbourne Cup
season of racing. The advertisement encouraged viewers to join the TAB. New customers
who signed up for a TAB account using the nominated promo code ("GET20") by making an
opening deposit into that account would receive a $20 account bonus credited to their
account from the TAB as part of the promotion. The Advertiser stressed that at no time was
there any mention of betting which was completely separate from the initial joining process.

The Advertiser also confirmed the advertisement mentioned that terms and conditions
applied to the promotion.

The Complaint Board Discussion
The Complaints Board began by discussing the general consumer takeout of the
advertisement. It agreed the term 'deposit' referred to the funds a new customer would need
to deposit when setting up an account with the TAB, rather than any subsequent betting.
The GET20 promotion was trying to encourage consumers to join the TAB by offering an
additional $20 once an account had been established.

The Complaints Board said the complaint appeared to have arisen from a misinterpretation
of what the promotion was offering in terms of opening an account rather than placing a bet.
While the Complaints Board acknowledged why the Complainant may have come to their
understanding of the advertisement, it did not consider this would be the likely consumer
takeout.

The Complaints Board noted the advertisement may have benefitted from using the word
'account', making it clearer to consumers new to this form of gambling that an account and
opening deposit was necessary before any gambling could commence.

The Complaints Board said the advertisement's terminology was technically correct and was
not misleading to consumers.

The Complaints Board ruled the advertisement was not in breach of Principle 2 or 3 of the
Code for Advertising Gaming and Gambling and had been prepared observing a high
standard of social responsibility.

Accordingly, the Complaints Board ruled to not uphold the complaint.



DESCRIPTION OF ADVERTISEMENT

The YouTube advertisement for the TAB said "Your heart wil race this Melbourne Cup
season. The Caulfield Cup is this Saturday. Join the TAB and get a $20 bonus with your
first deposit using promo code GET20. Terms and Conditions apply. TAB - Now you're in
the game!"

COMPLAINT FROM J LYNCH

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I have heard, and seen on YouTube advertising ((I have tried saving the URL but the ad
changes whilst the URL stays the same) an advertisement a number of times (specifically
today referring to the Caufield Cup).
The ad refers to "making a deposit" instead of making a bet.
Using the term "deposit" is disingenuous and manipulative,
Deposit:
1. To put or set down, esp carefully or in a proper place; place
2. To entrust for safekeeping; consign
3. (Banking & Finance) to place (money) in a bank or similar institution in order to earn
interest or for safekeeping
4. (commerce) to give (money) in part payment or as security

Using the term deposit implies that money is to be returned or refunded or is being held in
trust or safekeeping. It does not have the negative implications that the term "bet"
Bet :
1. An agreement usually between two parties that the one who has made an incorrect
prediction about an uncertain outcome will forfeit something stipulated to the other; a wager:
made a bet that it would stop raining before 2:00.
2. An amount or object risked in a wager; a stake: a bet of $50.

There is no mention of the risk of loss and the bias towards the organisation holding the bet
as against the loss to the bettor. This ad does little to promote responsible gambling.

CODE FOR ADVERTISING GAMING AND GAMBLING

Principle 2: Advertisements should observe a high standard of social responsibility.

Principle 3:
Advertisements should not by implication, omission, ambiguity or
exaggerated claim mislead or deceive or be likely to mislead or deceive consumers,
abuse the trust of or exploit the lack of knowledge of consumers, exploit the
superstitious or without justifiable reason play on fear.


RESPONSE FROM ADVERTISER - NEW ZEALAND RACING BOARD

Introduction
The New Zealand Racing Board (the NZRB) refers to your letter, dated 30 October 2017,
regarding the complaint received from J Lynch (the complainant) concerning the TAB's
Caulfield Cup advertisement (Complaint 17/393) (the TAB advertisement).

Thank you for providing the NZRB with the opportunity to respond to this complaint.

The NZRB and the TAB
Under the Racing Act 2003, the NZRB is the sole entity authorised to conduct betting on
racing and sports in New Zealand. The NZRB operates this through its "TAB" brand.

The NZRB's statutory objectives are to facilitate and promote racing betting and sports
betting and to maximise its profits for the long-term benefit of New Zealand racing. The
NZRB's advertising of the TAB, and its products, is an important vehicle for furthering its
statutory objectives.

In carrying out its functions, the NZRB is to exhibit a sense of social responsibility by having
regard to the interests of the community in which it operates. The NZRB also is charged
with problem gambling responsibilities.
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The NZRB takes its responsibilities as a responsible gambling operator very seriously.
Specifically, the NZRB is careful to ensure its advertising complies with the Advertising
Standards Authority (ASA)'s Codes of Practice.

Response to the Complaint
The NZRB has responded to the complaint in the attached ASA Complaint Response form,
including responding to the relevant Principles and Guidelines from the Code for Advertising
Gambling and Gaming (the Code).

Conclusion
The NZRB does not consider that the TAB advertisement breaches Principle 2,3 or the
associated Guidelines of these Principles of the Code. The NZRB seeks that the ASA does
not uphold this complaint.

The NZRB is grateful for the opportunity to provide a response to this complaint. Please
advise the NZRB if the ASA requires any further information.

Contact person for advertising
Hannah Poole
complaints
Marketing Communications Manager
New Zealand Racing Board
Name and contact at creative
Katie Loverich
agency
Senior Account Director
Y&R Auckland
Name and contact at media agency
Will Tran
Group Business Director
MBM Auckland

A basic, neutral description of the
The advertisement is from the New Zealand Racing
advertisement
Board (NZRB). The NZRB's wagering brand is the
TAB.
The advertising campaign as a whole promotes
"Melbourne Cup Season" across a variety of
mediums. Overall, the campaign comprises
advertisements about the Melbourne Cup Season
and specifically the Melbourne Cup Race (7
November) and each of the lead up races/race
meetings (being the Caulfield Cup (21 October), Cox
Plate (28 October) and Victoria Derby (4 November)).
The content of the various advertisements are
similar, with the relevant race meeting name being
changed for each advertisement.
The advertisement which is the subject of the
complaint is the Caulfield Cup radio advertisement
(the Caulfield Cup advertisement/ the advertisement).
The Caulfield Cup advertisement starts by referring
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to Melbourne Cup Season and proceeds to tell
listeners that Caulfield Cup is approaching.
The advertisement then encourages listeners to join
the TAB. New customers that sign up for a TAB
account using the nominated promo code ("GET20")
and make a deposit into that account will receive a
$20 account credit ($20 account bonus) from the
TAB (the Promotion).
The advertisement records that terms and conditions
apply to the Promotion and concludes with the TAB's
slogan "Now you're in the game."
RADIO
Date advertisement began
Caulfield Cup advertisement = 20/10/17 - 21/10/17
Cox Plate advertisement = 27/10/17 - 28/10/17
Melbourne Cup advertisement = 06/11/17 - 07/11/17
TELEVISION
Melbourne Cup Season advertisement = 08/10/17-
14/10/17
Caulfield Cup advertisement = 15/10/17 - 21/10/17
Cox Plate advertisement = 22/10/17 - 28/10/17
Victoria Derby advertisement = 01/11/17 - 04/11/17
Melbourne Cup advertisement = 01/11/17 - 07/11/17
DIGITAL
Melbourne Cup Season advertisement = 21/10/17 -
22/10/17 and 28/10/17 - 31/10/17
Caulfield Cup advertisement = 16/10/17 - 21/10/17
Cox Plate advertisement = 23/10/17 - 28/10/17
Melbourne Cup advertisement - 01/11/17-07/11/17
All media channels are listed on the attached media
Where the advertisement appeared
plan.
(all locations e.g. TV, Billboard,
Newspaper Website
The Caulfield Cup advertisement (and the Cox Plate
Is the advertisement still accessible
-
advertisement) are no longer being aired (as the
where and until when?
Caulfield Cup and the Cox Plate race days have now
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passed). As at the date of writing, similar
advertisements for Victoria Derby and Melbourne
Cup are being/will be played. The Melbourne Cup
Season advertisement has concluded.
A high definition copy can be supplied on request
A copy of digital media file(s) of the
advertisement - if the complaint
relates to on-screen graphic, please
send a broadcast quality version.
The advertising campaign is designed to raise
Who is the product / brand target
awareness and excitement in the 2017 Melbourne
audience?
Cup and associated race meetings surrounding the
Cup. The target audience is New Zealanders aged
18 years and over.
The complainant appears to take issue with the use
Clear substantiation on claims that
of the word "deposit" in the Caulfield Cup
are challenged by the complainant.
advertisement. The complainant suggests that the
advertisement should refer to "making a bet" rather
than the term "deposit."
The NZRB does not agree that the advertisement
should refer to "making a bet", rather than "deposit."
In order to qualify for the $20 account bonus, the
customer is required to make a first deposit into their
TAB account. The action required to qualify for the
account bonus is to deposit funds (and not to bet with
those funds). This is clear from the advertisement
(and from the accompanying terms and conditions of
the $20 account bonus promotion).
In fact, the customer would not be able to make any
bets through their TAB account until funds have been
deposited. This is because the account would have a
zero balance (and betting on credit is illegal in New
Zealand). Therefore, the customer is unable to make
a bet until a deposit is completed. Therefore,
"deposit" is the correct terminology to use in the
advertisement.
The complainant suggests that the term "deposit"
implies that the funds are to be returned or refunded
or are being held in trust, which he claims is not the
situation here. Whilst the purpose of a TAB account
is to facilitate betting with the TAB, a customer is not
prevented from withdrawing deposited funds. A
customer can choose to withdraw deposited funds (or
have their deposited funds remitted back to their
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credit card, if funds have been originally deposited by
credit card). Funds held in TAB accounts are held by
the NZRB in a trust arrangement for the benefit of
TAB customers.
Code Principles and Guidelines
The ASA has indicated that it considers the relevant
section of the ASA Code of Practice to be the Code
for Advertising Gaming and Gambling (the Code),
specifically Principle 2 and Principle 3.
The NZRB does not consider that the TAB
advertisement breaches Principle 2 or the associated
Guidelines of Principle 2 of the Code.
Each of the Guidelines for Principle 2 is discussed in
turn below.
a) Advertisements should not be directed at minors,
have strong or evident appeal to minors, nor portray
minors participating in activities in which they are
under the legal age. Minors may appear in situations
in which they would be naturally found (e.g. a family
meal), provided there is no direct or implied
suggestion that they will participate in the gaming.

The TAB advertisement is not directed at minors, nor
designed to have strong or evident appeal to minors.
No minor speaks in any part of the advertisement at
all. The voice in the advertisement is an adult (and
the voice does not sound as though it belongs to
someone under the age of 18).
b) Advertisements should not promote reliance on
gaming as a means of relieving a person's financial
or personal difficulties.

There is no reference (either explicit or implied) in the
advertisement that participating in betting is a means
of relieving financial or personal difficulties.
c) Advertisements should not encourage consumers
to participate excessively or beyond their means

The advertisement does not encourage customers to
bet excessively or beyond their means. The
advertisement makes no specific reference to betting
at all.
d) Advertisements should not state or imply a
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promise of winning nor portray unrealistic outcomes.
The advertisement does not state a promise of
winning, nor portray any unrealistic outcomes. The
reference to the TAB's slogan "Now you're in the
game" could be taken as suggesting that there is an
opportunity to win, should you be a TAB account
customer and a customer who has a bet on a
race/sports match. However, the advertisement does
not imply a promise of winning.
e) Advertisements should not exaggerate the
connection between the gaming activity and the use
to which the profits may be put
.
There is no depiction of the connection between the
gaming activity and the use to which the profits may
be put.
The NZRB considers that the TAB advertisement
reflects Principle 2 "Advertisements should observe a
high standard of social responsibility
". The
advertisement seeks to inform listeners about the
Melbourne Cup campaign, and specifically Caulfield
Cup Day. The NZRB encourages listeners to join the
TAB, an activity which is consistent with the NZRB's
statutory objectives. The voice in the advertisement
is clearly from someone over 18, there is no
reference to betting, no information on bet winnings
is given and there is no suggestion that betting is an
appropriate means of relieving financial difficulty.
The NZRB also does not consider that the
advertisement breaches Principle 3 or the associated
Guidelines of Principle 3 of the Code.
a) Winning claims should be factual and able to be
proven. The chances of winning or the size of the
prize should not be exaggerated.

The advertisement makes no explicit reference to
winning or the size of the prize. The reference to the
TAB's slogan "Now you're in the game" could be
taken as suggesting that there is an opportunity to
win, should you be a TAB account customer and a
customer who has a bet on a race/sports match.
However, the chances of winning are not
exaggerated and no prize sizes are specified.
b) Advertisements should not state or imply that a
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player's skil can influence the outcome of a game
unless the skill can affect the outcome of the game.

The advertisement does not state or imply that a
player's skil can influence the outcome of a game.
The NZRB considers that the advertisement reflects
Principle 3 "Advertisements should not by implication,
omission, ambiguity or exaggerated claim mislead or
deceive or be likely to mislead or deceive consumers,
abuse the trust of or exploit the lack of knowledge of
consumers, exploit the superstitious or without
justifiable reason play on fear.
" The NZRB does not
consider that the advertisement misleads or deceives
consumers in any manner, abuses the trust or lack of
knowledge of consumers' exploits the superstitious or
plays on fear.
No issue with release.
The response from the advertiser is
included in the published decision.
The ASA is not able to accept
confidential or proprietary
information. Please contact the
Complaints Manager if this is an
issue.

For Broadcast advertisements:
Attached
A copy of the script
Attached
A copy of the media schedule and
spot list
The TAB TVCs always have a GXC (General Except
CAB key number and rating
Children) CAB rating.
Our CAB Key Numbers for our Melbourne Cup
Season ads are below:
Caulfield Cup
30" TAB/30/189


For Digital advertisements:
For digital platforms we are using the below and have
What platform tools have you used
age exclusions in place where possible:
to target your audience?

?
Youtube Direct Booking
Activity is targeted to a Males 18+ audience
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(age determined when you sign-up to the
Youtube platform)

?
TVNZ and Mediaworks On Demand
Platforms
Activity targeted to an 18+ audience +
negative targeting of childrens content (age is
determined by sign-up to the On Demand
platforms)

?
Double Click Bid Manager Display Ads
(includes KPEX)
Activity is targeted to a Males 18+ audience
(based on Google accounts).

?
Stuff & NZ Herald Homepage Tenancy
Buys across desktop and mobile
Activity will reach all people (unable to be
targeted).

?
Facebook
In terms of social, age is determined by the
date of birth users supply when signing up to
the platform. We only target those 18+.

10