Lottery Advertising

Lotteries are controversial in many states where they operate. Opponents of lotteries who are unsuccessful in eliminating them often shift their focus to eliminating or drastically reducing a lottery's advertising budget.

AAF Position
Like other products that can only be sold to a particular audience, lottery advertising must be careful as to whom it is directed and how it is described, as is the case with other games of chance. If the goal is to have a successful, revenue-producing lottery, it must be advertised. If the goal is to eliminate the lottery, that issue should be debated openly and honestly.

Many opponents of lotteries see banning advertisements as an easy way to kill the entire program, since any product or service can only be successful if consumers know about it. They contend that state-run lottery advertisements lack the truthfulness required of private companies. Many critics say that ads unfairly target the poor and fuel addiction.

North Carolina introduced a state lottery system in 2006 with a stipulation that only one percent of generated revenue be spent on advertising.

Last updated: April 2007

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