A Hari Raya advertisement clip from an online casino known as GDBet333 has sparked a major outcry among local netizens, particularly Muslims. The video went viral all over social media since yesterday (Thursday, 15th April) evening.
Apart from heavily promoting the service provided by the company, the 2-minute long clip also features a group of actors (believed to be Muslims) singing along to a traditional Raya song, while clad in traditional Baju Kurung and Baju Melayu outfits.
For those wondering, the ad invites the public to earn double the money by using their company’s services in order to raise funds for the festive season. It’s understood that the video of the ad was uploaded over a week ago on YouTube. However, the clip apparently was taken down by YouTube for violating its community guidelines.
Still, it didn’t take long before the controversial ad went viral on Twitter. One user wrote, “Even the Genting Highlands casinos didn’t promote their businesses like this. After you cleaned up everything on the way to your hometown, suddenly you encounter a disaster (car breakdown etc.). If that’s the case, it’s a sign that God is still protecting you, He doesn’t want the money to be part of your flesh and blood.”
Scrolling through the replies section, many netizens expressed their disgust towards the company over their insensitive action. Others even put GDBet333 on blast for openly ridiculing the religion. Here are some thoughts shared by them:
In a more recent update, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commissions (MCMC) has come up with a statement to address the controversy. In this case, the regulatory body stated that they’ve contacted several media platforms, including YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, to remove the video, which clearly promotes gambling activities.
“Gambling activities and online gambling promotions are subject to the Open Gambling Houses Act 1953, under the jurisdiction of the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM),” they clarified. Furthermore, MCMC revealed that since March, they’ve been carrying out fast-track blockade operations in collaboration with the PDRM to instruct internet service providers to block access to websites that violate the law.
They continued, “The parties involved such as the production and the actors should be more sensitive and to not complicit in the activities of promoting online gambling, which is clearly an offence. The content production is subject to the Communications and Multimedia Content Code, to be complied with by those involved with the production and distribution of content.”
“Social media users should also be more responsible by reporting such matters directly to the authorities for their follow-up action rather than disseminating such content,” the MCMC further added. “The act of disseminating the content will only directly assist those involved in spreading their message to promote online gambling, which can be detrimental to the community.”
Here’s the ad: