Gambling Hypocrisy Hits The Mirror
Last month we commented on an article that appeared in The Daily Mail regarding glambling. This is the term that's been adopted to described promoting gambling to women. The Daily Mail reported that a player had been attracted by kittens and cupcakes to play at sites like Kitty Bingo but subsequently run up debts.
In our commentary we pointed out that The Daily Mail had conveniently forgotten about their own Pink Ribbon Bingo relationship (Cupcakes, Kittens But Not Pink Ribbons Eh Daily Mail!). A site that is pink, bright and attracts women to play bingo with pretty much all the same tools as the site's they were flagging up whilst running down how gambling sites operate.
Joining The Daily Mail on the anti-glambling bandwagon are The Mirror. They're reporting that a £10,000 win turned a player into a suicidal betting addict. Hayley Ringrose's lucky win turned into a nightmare as she soon ended up with a £40,000 debt after becoming hooked on playing. At one point she was spending up to £1000 a day having moved from bingo on to slots.
Again it's another sad tale of gambling addiction and perhaps more does need to be done to prevent these issues. We know operators do run opt-out controls and self exclusion but perhaps players need to be better educated so that become more self aware about the amounts they're playing. The Mirror article suggests that women are playing to "win extra cash to make ends meet" and that is a problem. Gambling isn't a way to make ends meet - it's something you should do only if you can afford to lose!
However, The Mirror denegrate their entire article by commenting on the sites where people can play bingo. They say "sites such as Foxy Bingo, Pink Casino and 888ladies are aimed specifically at women and many firms send gifts to hook players in". However, when we visited The Mirror's website what's that advertised down the sides? Surely not Mirror Bingo? Why yes - it's in fact a bingo site that uses the same Cassava software platform and therefore offers the same slots and games as Foxy and 888 Ladies. We'd be surprised if that Cashcade, who operate Mirror Bingo on their behalf, don't send gifts to hook players in!
We have no qualms about gambling issues being reported, especially if it does help improve the industry. What we don't like is the way both The Daily Mail and The Mirror conveniently overlook their own bingo relationships whilst reporting on other brands and gambling issues. If anything they should be ideally placed to offer information about self exclusion, spend limits and other processes that bingo operators take to try and protect players. They could have also added links to Gambleaware and perhaps explained how people can get help.
Instead it's another unbalanced piece about problem gambling. By not mentioning their own brand bingo site is bad enough but to have it advertised on the homepage smacks of hypocrisy. The only saving grace is that Mirror Bingo wasn't advertised around the article. Our view is that if these newspapers are going to promote an anti-gambling stance then perhaps they should start by dissociating themselves from all forms of gaming and betting?
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