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Ontario Passes Online Casino Restrictions on Advertising

Recently, new advertising restrictions have been implemented in a Canadian provincial consumer protection bill regarding online casino gaming. Would-be online casino advertisers in the Ontario province of Canada will need to update their knowledge on what is within the confines of the law and what isn’t following the passage of a consumer protection bill containing advertising restrictions for the online casinos industry. With the winds of change always stirring in the online gambling industry, this comes as no surprise.

Michael Geist, who holds the Canada Research Chair in Internet and E-commerce Law at the University of Ottawa, claims that the new legislation contains provisions barring the advertising of online casino sites. At the committee level, however, the provisions underwent important changes so that the final bill regarding online casino advertising looks somewhat different from the one that was introduced in the fall.

While the blanket law prohibition for online casino advertising remains the same, the definition of advertising has been lessened to instances where the online casino advertising originates in Ontario or is principally intended for Ontario residents. In Geist’s opinion, there will be a positive effect from this change, which will be to eventually exclude the wide majority of online casino advertising, which neither originates in Ontario nor is primarily focused on residents of the province.

Geist finished his argument by stating that most online casino sites are unaffected as a result, unless they specifically target Ontario with their advertising. Offline, it seems likely that online casino gaming newspaper and radio promotions, which is common in some newspapers and on sports radio stations, will vanish. Additionally, Internet search companies and websites will likely refuse online casino advertisements that specifically focus on Ontario. Such targeting may occur either by way of the promotion itself or by using geo-identifying technologies. This is definitely a major change to the law regarding online casino advertising in Ontario and will surely affect the online gamblers in this part of the world.

OCA News Editor

Jenny McKinnley is OCA’s financial correspondent. After spending years on the trading floor in both NY and London, she offers insight from the inside out on world financial news and events.