ASA Reprimands Karamba.com Following Complaints

As the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) of the United Kingdom continues to step up the battle against poor advertising in the gaming industry, casino site Karamba.com was slapped with a reprimand. Two complaints were made about the Karamba.com site and their use of Starburst, the popular online casino slots game.

The site produced a page titled “Tips and tricks on how to Win at Starburst”, and in this page gave out details about “can you your luck while playing?” and “top tips and tricks for winning”. Part of the problem comes from their calm that “wins at the minimum bet rate are much less frequent and pay out significantly smaller sums” – with the complaint being that the company was misleading gamers that different strategies were more likely to win alongside encouraging high-risk gambling behaviour that could “lead to financial, social or emotional harm.”

AG Communications, who handle the games on Karamba.com, said that it was “human error” and that the pages had not gone through their usual approval systems, and had since withdrawn the challenged advertisements whilst undergoing a full review.

The ASA argues that they had not seen any evidence to back up the claims being made, and found them to be ‘unsubstantiated and misleading’ – thus breaking CAP code.

This is going to be an interesting debate, as more companies are pulled up and cited for their careless use of language when advertising their products. The ASA state in an assessment that: “The ad must not appear again in its current form. We told Karamba.com to ensure their future marketing communications contained nothing that was likely to encourage irresponsible gambling behaviour that could lead to financial, social or emotional harm.

“Additionally, future marketing communications must not misleadingly imply that particular strategies improved a consumer’s chances of winning Starburst when that was not the case, and Karamaba.com must hold adequate substantiation in support of such claims.”

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