The AFL Fan Association (AFLFA) has said that it has interviewed and surveyed 3,000 football fans and has established that the prevalent mood has been one of the full support of an immediate ban on gambling advertisements.
Fans Insist that AFL Takes Road to Ban Ads Right Away
The ban has had the government in heated debate, with only a few opponents venturing to voice their disagreement with the measure openly. However, a three-year delay proposed by the government – and considered a grace period – has been met with more booing from sports fans who have had their share and have called for an end to ads.
Some 76% of the 3,000 fans interviewed said that they supported a blanket ban on gambling on both TV and radio. Another 79% pitched in that they would agree to not seeing these ads on the stadiums. Fans have made their opinion of the matter and 67% have insisted that sports clubs should not be accepting partnerships from gambling companies in the first place.
Clubs have been somewhat coyer on the matter upholding ambiguity to an extent. One of the biggest pain points for fans is the proposed delay of three years, which they see as impractical. AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan has too been an outspoken critic of the level of gambling advertisement and promotions pushed onto fans and consumers – not necessarily of the principle of having a partnership between clubs and gambling firms.
McLachlan though has cautioned about a more balanced regulatory approach would be needed to avoid immediate shocks to the industry. An AFL spokesperson has said that there should be a careful approach as to how the proposals pitched by a government inquiry should be put into practice lest fans end up paying more for tickets or integrity initiatives remain without funding.
Industry Cautions and Asks for a Moderate Approach
Industry people have also spoken on the matter with Sportsbet CEO Barni Evans who said that his company was all for an approach that slashes the number of gambling advertisements in general but does not actually completely ban it.
Independent Members of Parliament, such as Zoe Daniel, however, have been lambasting such ideas and arguing that the argument that gambling companies support sport was untenable. The business of gambling was based on causing harm, Daniel insisted in an opinion column she wrote.