Q&A: EGBA’s Code of Conduct on Responsible Advertising for Online Gambling

On 28 April 2020, the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) published the first pan-European Code of Conduct for responsible advertising for online gambling. The Code of Conduct (referred to as the “Code”) is broad in scope and introduces essential standards for advertising content, across all media platforms, and dedicated measures for social media. Below are some questions and answers about the Code.

Whose initiative is the Code?

The Code is an initiative of the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA). EGBA is the Brussels-based trade association representing the leading online gaming and betting operators established, licensed and regulated within the EU (and UK). These are bet365, Betsson Group, GVC Holdings Plc, Kindred Group Plc, and William Hill Plc. EGBA members accounted for 25% of Europe’s online gambling revenue in 2018 and together have more than 16.5 million customers in Europe.

What is the objective of the Code?

The objective of the Code is to enhance consumer and minor protection through the promotion of responsible advertising measures for online gambling. The Code reflects EGBA’s commitment to ensuring that gambling is a safe and responsible entertainment pastime. The Code sets long-term standards for gambling advertising content in Europe and complements EGBA’s more immediate efforts to promote responsible gambling advertising during the coronavirus.

What is the scope of the Code?

The Code applies to all EGBA members, is open for signature by gambling operators, other gambling associations and representation bodies of the media sector. The Code is applicable in all EU/EEA countries and the UK and covers all types of advertising for online gambling across all types of media platforms, regardless of the technology used. EGBA mandated a third-party to assess the impact of the Code on existing national regulations and self-regulation and a summary of this analysis is available here.

What type of measures are proposed in the Code?

The Code includes social responsibility measures and best practices for online gambling advertising including rules for content moderation, specific measures on minor protection, sponsorship, responsible gambling messaging and campaigns, and first-of-their-kind gambling advertising measures for social media.

How will the Code be applied?

The Code applies to all signatory online gambling companies and their contracted affiliates and advertising intermediaries, such as influencers, brand ambassadors, etc, where applicable. EGBA endeavours to ensure that compliance with the provisions of this Code, by its signatories, is monitored regularly in a transparent, participative and accountable manner by an independent third-party.

How long does the Code apply?

The Code has unlimited duration and is subject to updates of its terms.

How will the success of the Code be assessed?

The first independent monitoring of the Code took place during Summer 2021 and found that the Code provides a solid basis for responsible advertising, due to its comprehensive and detailed content, and EGBA members already correctly apply most of its measures. EGBA members and its members will discuss how to utilise and implement the feedback from the first monitoring round to further strengthen the overall effectiveness of the Code.

Key documents:

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