In July of last year I wrote this post lambasting Cricinfo for its online gambling banner ads.
Therefore I call on Cricinfo to cease doing business with betting websites. I know their money is green, and I know that times are hard, and I am sure there is the aforementioned firewall that protects your editors, but for a site that focuses on cricket to do business with a gambling website is quite simply the wrong thing to do.
In the same post I also enquired as to how my fellow bloggers would react if they were offered ad money from an online gambling organization.
Again, an excerpt:
People from several sites (Alternative Cricket, CricketEurope, and Deep Backward Point) popped up on Twitter and mentioned that they had been approached by betting sites regarding advertising but have turned them down. Andrew Nixon of CricketEurope went on to say that they instruct their networks not to serve betting related ads.
Finally, Alternative Cricket said that while they agree with my sentiment, they disagree with my reasons. They turn down betting related ads (for not a little amount of money) because their core audience is young people in India and they do not want to be responsible for getting a kid hooked.
Are you listening, Cricinfo? There are bloggers out there who do this for free or for very little money and they are turning down betting ads…it’s high time you did so, as well.
Finally, today I received the following email with the subject line Advertorial/Post Link Enquiry for https://limitedovers.wordpress.com from a Micah Davis of Marketers Unlimited:
My name is Micah and I would like to enquire about advertising on https://limitedovers.wordpress.com/
Please correct me if this is the wrong email address for this subject.
I work for Marketers Unlimited, a marketing agency affiliated to the online gambling industry and I am currently looking to promote one of our client’s sports betting section by a blog post or article with a link to my client’s website.
I have seen there are sections on your site where you can place the news/article with my client’s link on it. Is this possible?
If that’s something you would do, please let me know your offer and I am more than willing to discuss further details.
I hope to hear back from you, preferably with a favourable response.
Thank you for your time.Regards,Micah DavisInternet Marketing Specialist
I am not going to respond to Micah because, well, for one thing the above feels a bit like a scam to me and also, of course, because of the high moral standard maintained here at Limited Overs.
Seriously, though, it gave me pause. ‘Should I write her back?’ I thought for a second. ‘At least see what this is all about?’
But I am not going to. If it is wrong for Cricinfo, it is also wrong for my puny little blog. And so, again, I ask: are you listening, ESPN?
One Reply to “Do the Right Thing, Part 2”
I agree with your sentiments, personally I wouldn’t be comfortable advertising betting. But it’s not quite such a simple judgement for a company, whose directors have a legal obligation to maximise the returns to their shareholders. Cricinfo also have lots and lots of contributors from all round the world, many of whom will expect to be paid for the work they do, removing betting adverts would reduce the amount of money Cricinfo have available to pay them, is that right?
Sport and betting have a very long history, cricket perhaps more than many others. Trying to pull them apart is far more complicated than just stopping betting adverts on one site. Cricinfo is a fantastic resource for cricket fans, but it is not a moral guardian, even if they stop carrying betting adverts people will still see them on a myriad of other sites and mediums (newspapers have carried betting adverts for a very long time).
I do worry about the amount of betting ads on TV, particularly during sports broadcasts, when a celebrity face appears on screen shouting at you to bet on such and such a result. Online betting makes it very easy for people to bet, without anybody else ever knowing. I don’t have a solution, but I do know that simply banning things doesn’t always succeed in fixing the problem, you only have to look at the Indian betting market to see that.