The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has told both print and audio/visual medium to run a disclaimer while advertising online gaming and fantasy sports platforms, according to an advisory issued on Friday.
This comes after several gaming platforms advertised during the Indian Premier League recently and also during the telecast of the ongoing limited overs international series between India and Australia.
The advisory says that no gaming advertisement should depict any person below the age of 18 and that there should be a disclaimer saying that playing the game involves an element of financial risk and can be addictive.
“No gaming advertisement may depict any person under the age of 18 years, or who appears to be under the age of 18, engaged in playing a game of ONLINE GAMING FOR REAL MONEY WINNINGS, or suggest that such persons can play these games,” said guidelines issued by I&B ministry’s Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI).
The ASCI guidelines also said: “Every such gaming advertisement must carry the following disclaimer: ‘This game involves an element of financial risk and may be addictive. Please play responsibly and at your won risk’.”
While the guidelines say that such an ad should occupy at least 20% of the advertisement space in print, it should be at normal speaking pace and in the same language as the advertisement in audio-visual media.
The guidelines also say that the advertisements should not present ‘online gaming for real money winnings’ as an income opportunity or an alternative employment option.
The Ministry said that it has concerns over such advertisments and that they could be misleading people and audience, and are not in accordance to the strict rules and regulations of the Cable Television Act of 1995 and Consumer Protection Act of 2019.