ASCI Board revises ad disclaimer for real money games

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Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) the advertising self-regulatory body has reportedly approved a new disclaimer for real money gaming ads. The revised guidelines on real money gaming drop the word addictive instead the word habit-forming can be used in the standard disclaimers. The revised disclaimer is as follows:

इस खेल मैं आदत लगना या आर्थिक जोखिम संभव है.ज़िम्मेदारी से खेले.

“This game may be habit-forming or financially risky. Play responsibly”

This appears to be a significant win for gaming companies as “addictive” is associated with a negative connotation. We have approached ASCI for official confirmation. Dream11 and other real money gaming platforms have started implementing the change.

ASCI new guidelines real money gaming
From screen grab on live website and archived version

The guidelines on real money gaming ads issued by the ASCI came into effect on December 15, 2020, requiring gaming advertisements to not be aimed at minors, not present gaming as a possible source of livelihood or link it to success.

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From January 2021 to January 2022, ASCI has processed 117 complaints related to Online real money gaming. Last month, the government in the Parliament said it issued an advisory on 04 April 2020 to private satellite TV channels to comply with the guidelines of ASCI on advertisements relating to online gaming to protect consumers and inform them regarding financial risk.

In this March alone, 285 social media ads of online real-money gaming companies were identified as being in violation of the ASCI Code.

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ASCI noted that in some instances dubious claims such as ‘India’s biggest 1st prize’ were being made, and in many cases, the disclaimer informing consumers of the risks was flashed very quickly rather than at a normal speaking pace.