A TV ad for Kwiff, a betting app, seen in December 2017, stated, “Kwiff, the betting app where every time you place a bet, your odds might get Kwiffed. But how does kwiff work? You’re placing a bet with normal odds, and suddenly your odds might get supercharged … Like Adam from Clitheroe. He placed a bet on PSG to beat Celtic and got his odds supercharged from 11/8 to 80/1.” The voice-over was accompanied by an image of a telephone with text stating, “Adam’s odds on PSG were perfectly normal 11/8…until they were kwiffed 80/1”.
Two complainants, who believed the odds of 11/8 for PSG to beat Celtic were never available, challenged whether the ad was misleading.
Eaton Gate Gaming Ltd t/a Kwiff stated that the ad displayed a simplified version of the bet “PSG to win & only one or no team scores” and that a £5 bet was placed on that bet at 11/8 odds on Tuesday 12 September. They stated that they would not use the ad again and had submitted an ad with a revised bet to Clearcast.
Clearcast responded that they had not been made aware that the bet in the ad was not genuine before clearing the ad.
The ASA considered that consumers would understand the claim “Adam’s odds on PSG to beat Celtic were perfectly normal 11/8” to mean that those particular odds had been genuinely available to consumers for bets on PSG beating Celtic and was an example of the type of odds that were achievable through using Kwiff’s service.
We noted that the bet on which those odds had been available was “PSG to win & only one or no team scores”. Because we considered that consumers would understand the claim in the ad to mean that the odds were based on PSG to win without the additional qualification, but that bet was not available at the odds quoted in the ad, we concluded that the ad was misleading.
The ad breached BCAP Code rules
The standards objectives, insofar as they relate to advertising, include:
a) that persons under the age of 18 are protected;
b) that material likely to encourage or incite the commission of crime or lead to disorder is not included in television and radio services;
c) that the proper degree of responsibility is exercised with respect to the content of programmes which are religious programmes;
d) that generally accepted standards are applied to the contents of television and radio services so as to provide adequate protection for members of the public from inclusion in such services of offensive and harmful material;
e) that the inclusion of advertising which may be misleading, harmful or offensive in television and radio services is prevented;
f) that the international obligations of the United Kingdom with respect to advertising included in television and radio services are complied with [in particular in respect of television those obligations set out in Articles 3b, 3e,10, 14, 15, 19, 20 and 22 of Directive 89/552/EEC (the Audi Visual Media Services Directive)];
g) that there is no use of techniques which exploit the possibility of conveying a message to viewers or listeners, or of otherwise influencing their minds, without their being aware, or fully aware, of what has occurred"
Section 3.9 3.9 Broadcasters must hold documentary evidence to prove claims that the audience is likely to regard as objective and that are capable of objective substantiation. The ASA may regard claims as misleading in the absence of adequate substantiation. 2). and 3.2 3.2 Advertisements must not mislead consumers by omitting material information. They must not mislead by hiding material information or presenting it in an unclear, unintelligible, ambiguous or untimely manner.
Material information is information that consumers need in context to make informed decisions about whether or how to buy a product or service. Whether the omission or presentation of material information is likely to mislead consumers depends on the context, the medium and, if the medium of the advertisement is constrained by time or space, the measures that the advertiser takes to make that information available to consumers by other means. (Misleading advertising), and 3.9 3.9 Broadcasters must hold documentary evidence to prove claims that the audience is likely to regard as objective and that are capable of objective substantiation. The ASA may regard claims as misleading in the absence of adequate substantiation. (Qualification).
The ad must not appear again in its current form. We told Kwiff to ensure that they accurately described any example bets displayed in their ads, and displayed the correct odds for that bet.