Lithuania has revealed a new law that requires all gambling ads to show gambling-related harm notifications after the Vilnius Seimas (parliament) passes a new bill.
During its first reading, the bill, which will see the alerts become compulsory from 1 July 2020, gained an overwhelming majority. The Seimas ruled that it is the duty of the country’s Gaming Control Authority to decide what information will be included in the warning.
The proposer of the bill, Mykolas Majauskas, said: “Gambling is not an evil in itself, but as the sector develops, it is important to be able to control the risks involved and minimise the negative consequences.
“There is no need to jam poles into the spokes of the gaming market’s wheels in a way that would pull it off the road, but at least you need to attach reflectors.”
He went on: “By law, we would oblige the Gambling Authority to set clear rules and to make notes that would change every time. And we also expect a responsible and sensible approach to how these rules should be applied. That is, they would not apply, for example, to gambling branding on basketball players’ uniforms.”
Majauskas stated by introducing the bill that Lithuania will be able to replicate the systems in place across a variety of other EU countries.
“Other countries in the European Union have very similar problems, they say: first, we need to educate; secondly, we must help those who have problems; third, we need to help people who have loved ones who have gambling problems,” he explained. “One of the basic tools for solving problems is public education, education through social advertising.”