Fantasy Premier League Players Targeted by Gambling Industry: Unveiling the Impact

Fantasy Premier League Players Targeted by Gambling Industry: Unveiling the Impact

BBC has discovered that the world of fantasy Premier League (FPL) advertisements is targeting football players. This is an online football game designed for kids.

The world of fantasy Premier League (FPL) advertisements is in the spotlight, as BBC uncovered a trend of targeting football players, especially kids. FPL is an online football game made for youngsters. Numerous ads and promotions from FPL have been noticed on popular podcasts, websites, and social media platforms. A significant podcast called “The FPL Wire” has removed FPL ads from their content after these revelations came to light. Among these ads, one was for Fair Play Exchange, a company promoting personal bets among individuals. The podcast clarified that they haven’t accepted any compensation or affiliation with Fair Play Exchange and won’t do so.

FPL General, an image from the podcast, clarified that he participated as a guest on the show and had no influence over the ads. In FPL, players select a team of real-world footballers and score points based on their actual performance. They can compete globally and also create private leagues to challenge friends and family, with the game’s age limit set at 13 years or older.

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While the Premier League administers the game, there is a large community of independent content creators who offer tips and tools online. However, the Premier League doesn’t manage these sites or podcasts. Fantasy Football Scout, one such independent website, recently featured promotional articles for Bet365, encouraging readers to join a fantasy football-based game with a chance to win £500,000. Yet, neither the website nor Bet365 responded to comments.

The exact number of children playing FPL remains unknown. Professor Luke Worthington from Loughborough University, a researcher on fantasy games, estimates that 45% of adults signing up are below 30 years old. A parliamentarian overseeing an FPL group expressed concerns that the industry seems to be “training” websites used by children. Carolyn Harris MP, who leads the All-Party Parliamentary Group on FPL-related harm, finds these findings deeply concerning.

Guidelines from the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) advise that FPL advertisers should avoid exploiting young people’s culture and not directly appeal to those under 18 due to age restrictions. Last year, the ASA found Ladbrokes’ ad in breach of the code for featuring Premier League footballers known among children. An FPL spokesperson assured that Fantasy Premier League remains free for everyone to join, ensuring inclusivity.

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