I have repeatedly been shown this ad for an online gambling site on Music SE:

gambling site ad

While (heavily regulated) gambling is legal in my jurisdiction, I consider advertisements for online gambling to be inappropriate on SE. This ad is particularly objectionable, because as far as I can tell (French is not my first language) it seems to be surreptitiously aimed at an underage audience by suggesting online gambling as a way to pass "5 minutes de lecture" (5 minutes of reading), which I understand is an expression commonly used in schools.

  • Eh I wouldn't quite say it's inappropriate, necessarily (not good at French to any measurable degree). Commented Oct 16, 2019 at 4:53
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    I don't speak French either. But it seems to tell that if you have any free 5 minutes, you could go there to play. Commented Oct 16, 2019 at 4:58
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    @VictorStafusa As far as I know "5 minutes de lecture" is an expression typically used when a teacher tells pupils to read from their textbook by themselves (while he does something else). It is also apparently used for a project in schools to get children to spend time reading books every day. I think it's being used as a way of attracting the attention of people of school-going age, but in a roundabout way that doesn't break the laws on advertising gambling to minors.
    – user621031
    Commented Oct 16, 2019 at 5:05
  • As a French user, the wording is weird and incites to gambling. It says something like : "Take a couple of minutes to play, you have everything to gain".
    – IEatBagels
    Commented Oct 16, 2019 at 12:31

3 Answers 3


Thanks for reporting. We will ensure that all gambling is removed from our network. Thank you again.

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    And I'll ask a third time; what system are you using? You're causing a hell of a lot of work for yourself and risk a lot of damage to people visiting by not adressing these ads before they end up in circulation.
    – Zoe
    Commented Oct 16, 2019 at 11:41

Now that you mention it, I just realized something.

Our network accept users as young as 13 years old if I remember correctly.
So, that would mean that we are serving online casinos ads, fake "snake-oil" drugs ads, dating sites ads... to a community that by our own admittance includes 13 years old users. That's... fine with us I guess?

More seriously. I will quote user568458 answer on another post about this issue:

Well at a bare minimum, adverts should not contain content that would be moderated if it was included in a question or answer. (emphasis mine)

I already said that here. Google Ads platform should provide some content filtering. It is time to enable that.

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    Tell me a site whose audience is 18+ only? My point is that almost every community website or social network has 13 as their cutoff age. If and since gambling is legal, where would they go to advertise? I see banners of alcohol companies beside some highways in my city where even younger kids pass by. Do you intent to blame companies for spoiling children? Do you blame kids for going there despite knowing that some banners are there? In some ToS-es, parents' supervision is suggested. Not practically possible, but theoretically yes.
    – anki
    Commented Oct 16, 2019 at 8:23
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    "Our network accept users as young as 13 years old" - there's nothing preventing even younger people from browsing.
    – Zoe
    Commented Oct 16, 2019 at 9:17
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    @ankii I think you are probably misunderstanding what I said. Nowhere I made claims that they can't legally do this and/or should agree with me to not do this. What I do say is that if we are going to pretend that we care to protect younger people from bad content while they are on the site, we should do it every time, not just when there isn't any money to be gained by looking the other way.
    – SPArcheon
    Commented Oct 16, 2019 at 9:17
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    @ankii See this reply too: some of the ads we are getting would be moderated if included in a post made by an user exactly for those reason: I expect ads to live to the same standards.
    – SPArcheon
    Commented Oct 16, 2019 at 9:17

First off, ads are not related to the site you are visiting so it will show any type of ads in every website.

Terry had already mentioned they are:

working really hard to block all inappropriate ads and provide you with reporting and ad customization tool.

Until the tool gets released, this will continue to happen so the best bet is to use an adblocker.

While online gambling is not an ad that you would want on a network like SE, it's not considered as inappropriate like this NSFW ad.

I would still consider to remove online gambling ads as they're only targeted on 18+ and every user can see that ad. You don't need to be registered to have ads so the "Our network accept users as young as 13 years old" is applicable only for registrations, not for viewing the content.

An ideal situation would be to suspend the ad service SE is using and only release when the tool is done but SE can't lose money that way.

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