Thursday - June 29, 2017 9:09 am

Keep your $1, reform lottery ads

Written by

We have complained about it for years, and now the state of Wisconsin may be ready to do something about it. We're talking about the Wisconsin lottery, and how it is advertised. When the lottery was first created, lawmakers inserted language into the legislation insisting that any lottery advertising be educational, rather than promotional, in nature. In other words, the lottery could explain how to play the games, but not necessarily encourage people to play. That is even part of the state constitution. If you have seen or heard any ads for the Wisconsin lottery, you know that line has been blurred. Or you could say even ignored and flaunted. The ads for the lottery are some of the most campy. Singing, dancing, funny hats, colorful balloons. Does that explain how the game is played? No, it is designed to get you to buy tickets. But now a bipartisan bill has been introduced in Madison which would require the lottery do away with their campy ads. The language of the bill even requires that all disclosures in their advertising be delivered in a normal speaking voice. No more 20 words a second delivered like a carnival barker. Further, this bill would reduce the lottery's advertising budget to $5 million a year, a 33% reduction. Governor Walker's budget calls for increasing lottery ad spending by an additional $3 million per year, which he says would lead to more ticket sales, and therefore more property tax relief. A whopping dollar per year per homeowner. I'd much rather let the state keep my dollar, if we can get rid of those annoying, and illegal, ads.

Scott Robert Shaw

Scott Robert Shaw is the Program Director for both 1410 WIZM and 580 WKTY.   He's currently the morning news anchor on 1410 WIZM, Z93 and 95-7 The Rock.  He joined Mid-West Family Broadcasting as a reporter/anchor in 1989 and served as News Director from 1990-2015.   He's been the winner of several Wisconsin Broadcaster's Association awards for Best Editorial in Wisconsin.  He enjoys traveling, bicycling and cooking.