The post in question appeared on the Commission’s official Twitter feed on 9 December and was in relation to how consumers should only place bets with operators that hold a licence in Britain, amid an increase in wagering activity during the 2022 Fifa World Cup.
The tweet included a link to the Commission’s online register of licensed operators, along with a gif – a moving image file widely used on social media – of a child celebrating at a football game.
After the tweet was posted, it was criticised by some gambling reform campaigners.
The Commission said it had been using social media to promote how consumers can protect themselves when gambling online but admitted that the use of a gif featuring a child was an “error” and issued the apology in a statement on its Twitter feed.
Great Britain gambling minimum age
The minimum age to gamble in Great Britain, including to purchase a National Lottery ticket or scratchcard, is 18.
“We realise this was an oversight and undermined an important consumer protection message,” the Commission said. “We apologise to anyone who may have been offended by unintended association and have now deleted the tweet.”
The Commission followed up by posting another tweet featuring a similar message about how consumers should only bet with licenced betting operators and the link to its approved list. However, the gif of the child had been removed and replaced with a short video produced by the Commission, stating “Our online register lists officially licensed betting companies” and an animation of the Fifa World Cup trophy being lifted.