The UK’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has banned a TV ad for online casino operator 21.co.uk which was found to over-emphasise the role of strategy and portrayed gambling in a context of toughness.

The TV ad was seen in March earlier this year and featured a man in a tuxedo sitting at a blackjack table. A voice-over stated: “His heart is pounding. His body is still. He shuffles his chips as he thinks. Heart versus head. Emotion versus reason. He makes his move. He makes his own luck.”

There were close-up shots of the man’s face and of his eye showing the pupil dilating before he put his chips and cards on the table.

The ASA challenged whether the claim “He makes his own luck” implied that gambling involved skill rather than chance, and therefore that the ad was socially irresponsible, and also whether the ad portrayed gambling in a context of toughness.

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