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New spin to anti-gambling ad

The ad, by the National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG), was given a new spin after Germany won the World Cup on Monday morning (July 14).

SINGAPORE: The widely-panned anti-gambling advertisement from the National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG) was given a new spin after Germany defeated Argentina 1-0 to win the World Cup championship.

The original ad featured a boy named Andy telling his friends that his father had bet his savings on Germany winning the World Cup. On Monday morning (July 14), after Germany's victory, a new version of the ad went up on the NCPG website: Another boy asks Andy if he got his savings back since Germany won the World Cup. Andy replies with a frown: “No, Dad never stops... he wants to bet one more time.”

"NCPG’s central message is that problem gambling causes harm to individuals and their loved ones, regardless of the nature and outcome of the bet," a spokesman for NCPG told Channel NewsAsia. "Problem gamblers find it hard to stop, regardless of the outcome of any single bet. This is a reflection of real life examples that NCPG has come across.  It is thus important that both affected individuals and their family members know where to go to seek help, should they face issues with problem gambling."

The ad sparked dozens of memes on social media after Germany crushed Brazil in a record-breaking 7-1 victory in the semi-finals, and was spoofed on several international sites including Buzzfeed and 9GAG. US talk show host Jimmy Fallon also weighed in on the ad after the Germany-Brazil match, saying on The Tonight Show: "Cheer up kid, your Dad's going to be so rich you don't even have to go to college anymore!"

Budget carrier Scoot took a swipe at the ad on Monday, posting a cheeky advertisement on Facebook featuring caricatures of the two boys.

“Germany has won. My Dad says he’s going to take us on a holiday on Scoot,” the caricature of Andy said. The other boy replies: “Bo jio,” – a Hokkien phrase loosely translated as “Why didn’t you invite me”. Within five hours after it was posted, the ad garnered 702 likes and was shared 368 times.

While NCPG said after the Brazil-Germany match that the ad would not be pulled, it clarified today that "there are no plans to launch new creatives and we will let the current campaign run its course. The campaign was meant to reinforce the message during the World Cup season which has since ended”. 

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