Gubbed punter makes complaint to ASA about William Hill advert
November 2, 2018
A customer of William Hill asked the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) to investigate whether a television advert for UK bookmaker William Hill could be deemed misleading.
The advert, which aired during the 2018 World Cup, stated “William Hill customers are getting more every day of the World Cup. With two extra bet boosts available on all World Cup matches”.
The disgruntled punter had been ‘gubbed’ by the bookmaker prior to the advert being aired and therefore would not be eligible to receive the bet boosts along with other William Hill promotions. The complainant then asked the ASA to intervene as the “two extra bet boosts available on all World Cup matches” as advertised was misleading as they were unable to receive them.
The customer was gubbed during the World Cup after reportedly receiving a total of 478 betting offers worth in excess of £1,600 throughout the lifetime of their account. However, their total deposits into their William Hill account totalled just £60.
Following the ASA contacting the bookmaker about the complaint, William Hill responded stating that the customer had been contacted two weeks prior to the advert being aired, on 23rd June, that they would not be eligible to participate in certain promotions.
The ASA ultimately found William Hills advert to be accepted due to the fact that it did not state that “all” customers would be eligible to claim the offer and did state that restrictions applied.
The ASA said:
“We understood that there were individual circumstances that meant the complainant’s account had been restricted and they had been notified that they were no longer entitled to receive bonuses.
“We considered that the particular restriction, which only applied to certain customers based on their individual circumstances, was not significant because those customers were likely to be aware of the restrictions that applied to them and, therefore, it was acceptable not to specifically reference it in the ad.
“We therefore concluded that the ad was unlikely to mislead.”
Gubbing is a common occurrence among people who use bookmakers for the purpose of matched betting, which is the process of how to turn free bets into cash, and often occur when a punter claims too many promotions which take value away from bookmaker. Bookmakers offer promotions such as free bets and bonuses in an attempt to attract new customers and to retain their current ones. However, they do not accept overuse of these offers and often restrict customers who do so.
There are ways you preserve your accounts for longer with bookmakers and decrease the chance of them gubbing you. ‘Mug betting’ is something a lot of matched bettors do and involves you placing bets which are not connected to any offers or promotions in order for you to seem more like a regular punter. Claiming £1,600 worth of bonuses as the customer featured here did while only making deposits totalling £60 is a clear sign of bonus hunting and a warning to all who do not take the time to preserve the condition of their accounts.