Flutter Entertainment Stop using ‘Risk-Free’ Terminology

You must be careful with the language used when discussing gambling. Flutter Entertainment have discovered that with the term ‘risk-free.’ They own Paddy Power and after a complaint will not be using that term in the future in their marketing and promotional material.

Anyone who has visited the Paddy Power website or seen their adverts will be familiar with the term. It was used on some of their betting promotions, particularly their welcome offer. Those are used to entice people to become site members.

One such promotion was featured online and in a promotional campaign run by ‘The Sun’ newspaper targeting players in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. It spoke of a ‘£20 risk free bet.’ The idea being that if you registered an account, your first bet would see your stake (up to £20) returned as a free bet if it lost.

The offer led to a complaint being made to the Advertising Standards Authority. The complainant felt the advert was socially irresponsible. Why? Well, their opinion was that it suggested gambling was risk free. Surely anyone considering joining a gambling site would know that gambling is not risk free.

Was it risk free though? Players would stake up to £20 and if it lost, get their stake back but as a free bet. That could then be used and end up being used in a losing bet. The customer would still see their account drop by up to £20.

Flutter Entertainment PLC said that the company had been working at stopping using the term ‘risk free’ in their advertisements. A Paddy Power spokeswoman did note though that there were no restrictions on using the ‘risk-free’ term.

The Advertising Standards Authority have welcomed this news and “their assurance that they (Flutter Entertainment PLC) would not promote gambling as being potentially ‘risk free’ in future marketing communications.”

Flutter Entertainment also sent out an email to their affiliates asking them to go through site content and remove ‘risk free’ from their pages for Paddy Power and Betfair, who they also own.
As for the ‘risk-free’ bet offer, a new offer is in place. This sees the initial bet that loses having its stake refunded as cash.

Three times in the past couple of months, Flutter have had problems with their advertising. One saw the offering of free spins to members who it was known have gambling problems.