July 18, 2006 7:11 AM PDT

After long U.K. ban, casinos get TV-advertising nod

Online bookies and casinos in the have been given the "all clear" to start advertising on television in the United Kingdom, on the condition that they do not target children or bill their services as a way to make money or attract the opposite sex.

By 2007, the rapidly growing gaming industry will be able to advertise their services during TV programming for the first time since the country's 40-year-old gambling laws came in to force.

Although a consultation process into how the advertisements should be regulated has only just been launched, the Committee of Advertising Practice on Tuesday outlined key considerations.

The CAP guidelines suggest that the ads not promote any gambling that is socially irresponsible or could lead to financial or emotional harm. They must not suggest that gambling makes a person appear sexier or more attractive to the opposite sex.

The ads also must not attempt to appeal to underage viewers, "especially by reflecting or being associated with youth culture," the CAP guidelines said. Nor may they suggest that gambling could be a way to overcome financial problems.

Will Sturgeon of Silicon.com reported from London.

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