Popular television stars Ant and Dec have come under a great deal of criticism for launching an internet based gambling game that is sure to attract young fans to this activity. The game at the centre of the controversy is based on one of the duo’s wildly popular television shows. The game is known as Saturday Night Takeaway and it has a number of features that incorporate elements of Ant and Dec’s ITV show of the same name.
Saturday Night Takeaway in Trouble
The newly launched game has attracted the attention of anti-online gambling campaigners. The Saturday Night Takeaway show has a viewership of 8 million. It’s a no brainer that the game will get lots of customers from among the comedic pair’s immense fan base, most of whom are very young.
The game borrows heavily from the ITV show and fans of the latter will find plenty of familiar sections. The game also uses the star power of Ant and Dec quite a bit. It features pre-recorded clips of the pair giving players encouragement as they play.
The Saturday Night Takeaway game is being advertised very aggressively, and it promises to make the competition look dull in comparison. There is an attractive sign-on bonus worth £10 as well. Players will have the bonus amount credited to their account when they make a deposit of their own. The game is well on its way to becoming one of the most popular ones in the United Kingdom.
Ant and Dec Criticised
The television stars have come in for a good deal of criticism from a number of people who are unhappy with the duo’s involvement with what many consider to be a dangerous activity. Liverpool resident John Myers is one such person. He lost his son Ryan in 2014 when the young man committed suicide at the age of 27 because he couldn’t cope with the gambling debts he had accumulated.
Myers had scathing remarks for the celebrity presenters saying that they should never have gotten involved with any activity that makes gambling socially acceptable. He pointed out that the downside of gambling was never highlighted in the midst of all the glitz, and most people had no idea about the dangers it presented.
Matt Zarb-Cousin’s Point of View…
Campaign For Fairer Gambling representative Matt Zarb-Cousin pointed out that the game would be extremely attractive to young people. Most of whom have enjoyed Ant and Dec’s show for many years. There are concerns that young people will get addicted to gambling. They may end up spending huge amounts of money they cannot afford to lose. In fact, young people are especially vulnerable to gambling addiction.
ITV released a statement saying that only users above the age of 18 would be permitted to sign up. The company also said that it complied with strict rules governing the advertisement of gambling services. It also pointed out that Ant and Dec didn’t endorse the show directly. Instead, the entertainment industry pair were just featured on a portion of the show.
Ant and Dec’s Show Will Go On!
It is most unlikely that Ant and Dec will step away from their gambling show. They have had to deal with a fair amount of bad press on account of it. The Newcastle-born presenters have had a very successful association lasting many years. They have weathered many a storm together, including accusations of plagiarism and also cheating on their television show. They have also rebuilt their careers along the way. Moving from being a pop group to hosting a hugely popular show under their own name.
Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly have no doubt come a long way from their formative years in council estates in Newcastle’s West End.