Today sees the start of our new ‘Bookmaker Fairplay’ campaign – where we are taking a stand against unfair modern day bookmaker practices.
If, like many, you have suffered from closed bookmaker accounts or limited stakes on the bets you want to place, this campaign is designed to help you – both in order to raise awareness of this issue and to ultimately force change.
Our Bookie Fairplay Campaign is lobbying for all bookmakers to implement 2 proposals:
1. Bookmakers need to take a minimum stake bet of £20 on any bet they advertise either online or in print media from all punters.
2. Bookmakers to provide a clear warning to all new customers that they may have their accounts closed or limited in stakes if they are considered unprofitable.
How You Can Get Involved
First of all, be sure to sign our petition demanding Bookie Fairplay and the implementation of our 2 campaign proposals.
As with all petitions, it is a simple numbers game and the more signatures on it, the greater the chance of people listening to this issue and forcing change. We will be lobbying both the Gambling Commission and the Association of British Bookmakers.
Promote On Social Media
You can also help push this campaign and share the petition link on twitter with the hashtag #bookiefairplay.
Here is a sample tweet you can send:
I support the @sbcinfo campaign for Bookmaker Fairplay. Sign the petition http://tinyurl.com/pvk4j5k #bookiefairplay
You can also spread awareness through Facebook, by liking and sharing the Smart Betting Club Facebook page and links to our campaign.
Why The Need For The Campaign?
In recent years, there has been a clear sea-change in how bookmakers treat punters, with the issue of account closures and stake limitations affecting more and more people.
Some bookmakers are not interested in laying bets from anyone with an ounce of common sense, and only want the type of gamblers that play on FOBT’s or in their online casinos. In short – they want losers and losers only and treat all other punters with disdain.
Whilst we don’t expect bookmakers to roll-over and allow punters to win as much as they want, we do expect a fair balance to be struck. Stories of punters who have had accounts closed despite showing a loss illustrate just how far the problem has gone.
When you consider the record profits being made by many bookmakers from their hugely controversial Fixed Odds Betting Terminals, it is clear these decisions are wholly unjust and completely unfair.
Our 2 Campaign Proposals
Why then have we chosen the 2 campaign proposals put forward in our petition? Here’s why…
Proposal 1: Bookmakers need to take a minimum stake bet of £20 on any bet they advertise either online or in print media from all punters.
Reasoning: We feel it is completely unfair for a bookmaker to advise a price but to be selective as to which punters can take it or not. If they wish to advertise a bet either online or in print media, they have to stand it to a minimum stake of £20 at least from all punters.
We would also extend this to all free bet offers. e.g. if a bookmaker is offering a free £20 bet to new account holders, they must allow the individual to bet at least £20 before they close/restrict the account.
Proposal 2: Bookmakers to provide a clear warning to all new customers that they may have their accounts closed or limited in stakes if they are considered unprofitable.
Reasoning: Many punters are unaware that they run the risk of having their account closed or stakes limited if they are considered to be ‘unprofitable’ to a bookmaker. A clear warning needs to be displayed upon signing up to any bookmaker who may close or restrict a punter in this way.
An Industry Dominated By Bookmakers
Why might you ask, does it take a small business like the Smart Betting Club to put forward this campaign and petition?
Well, it is simply because unlike many, we do not rely on bookmaker advertising or affiliate commission for the future of our business.
Instead we take a small fee from each member of our service, which in turn, allows us to remain independent from bookmakers and say it how it is.
With the power of the Internet and social media, those of us impacted can combine together and make such a racket that the authorities simply have to listen to us.
There Is An Alternative
Through our campaign for Bookie Fairplay we also want to raise awareness that there are real alternatives to the unjust and unfair business models operated by many UK bookmakers.
Some of these fairly run bookies don’t get the exposure they deserve so we want to change this and showcase that better practice can be applied.
Here are a few examples…
1) Bookmakers That Quote Realistic Prices.
One prominent independent bookmaker takes bets on racing from all kinds of punters – even those that are winners. This is because he offers lower odds and operates a proper betting ‘book’.
As a punter you might only get 4/1 when 5/1 is on offer elsewhere, but at least that price is realistic and your account will not be closed or restricted.
2) Bookies That Play The Market Not The Punter.
Bookmakers such as Pinnacle Sports and other Asian based bookies use market support and shrewd punters to tell them how they should change their odds. Thus winning punters are actively encouraged to join them as they can help them make informed decisions.
The main reason many UK bookmakers don’t adopt this model is that it is cheaper and easier to simply close down winning punters, rather than build up a trading team with expertise on running a proper betting book.
Help Us Raise Awareness
If you support this campaign, be sure to Sign The Petition and share the link via Social Media. We intend to lobby many other prominent organisations to raise awareness and to further promote the 2 proposals.
Watch this space…
Peter – SBC Editor