The Spanish Supreme Court is reviewing the constitutionality of the gambling advertising ban. [Image: Shutterstock.com]
Spain’s efforts to crack down on gambling advertisements have hit a big hole as the Supreme Court questions their constitutionality.
The operators immediately paid the decrees
The “Garzón Law”, created in September 2021, has regulated gambling advertisements in the media and sports since its inception. Prior to this, the royal decree on commercial contacts of gambling activities banned the tracks of game promoters. The operators immediately pushed the decrees back; The prolonged battle could finally turn in their direction.
The court’s decision will ultimately determine the course of gambling in the country.
The original guidelines stated that operators could advertise their products only from 1 to 5 AM. Additionally, agencies cannot partner with sports teams or entice players with special offers, among other rules.
Spain’s Minister of Consumer Affairs, Alberto Garzón, was a big proponent, hence the Garzón law that was introduced later.
It directly links freedom of expression and commercial operations
The appeal against Garzón and the ban brought by the Spanish Association of Digital Games (JDigital) is based on the principle of conservatism of the law. This part of the country’s constitution is one of the most important, as it directly links freedom of expression to business operations, which is why the case was quickly sent to the Supreme Court.
“The law does not provide the standards by which the regulatory development of advertising must take place or the guidelines under which regulations may prescribe or specify advertisements that may be carried out by gambling operators, nor any indication or standard as to what may or may not be considered proportionate,” it states. Supreme Court order.
According to the interpretation, the court will have the power to block further restrictions on advertising if it chooses. JDigital and other interested parties will also challenge other areas of law if their current attempt fails.
The gambling ecosystem in Spain
Spain has not had many serious problems in the gambling market so far. Problem gambling rates are low, there are no major scandals, and it is the largest form of e-commerce despite advertising being banned.
However, the growing importance of gambling around the world is beginning to cause problems; As companies search for new partners and ways to grow their business, current standards make any internal attempts nearly impossible.
Banning gambling is different from restricting the choice to promote it
Garzon has always been opposed to corporate attempts to advance their agendas. His position is that outlawing gambling is different from restricting the option to promote it.
The minister intended that the restrictions would suppress consumers’ desire to risk gambling during personal economic crises. Furthermore, he feels that preventing companies from partnering with teams will limit the chances of bankruptcy.
If the Supreme Court finds the restrictions unconstitutional, it will still need to refer the case to the Constitutional Court – a process that can take years. The operators stated that if this happens, they will demand a return to normal operations in the meantime.