In this chapter three governance issues that concern the AFL are discussed. Firstly, through an examination of the AFL IDP it was argued there are unnecessary inconsistencies relative to its primary purpose. The inconsis- tencies are threefold. Firstly, there is an inconsistency regarding the three- strike rule non-disclosure clause. An offending player's positive testing information is withheld from his own club until a third strike has been recorded. I argued that this works to hamper the club's intervention capa- city to assist the player and is counter-productive to all clubs' expenditure and resources towards minimising risky behaviour. Secondly, it is unfair that AFL players are granted privileges not generally extended to other members of the public for illicit doping transgressions. That is, an inconsis- tency exists relative to differing jurisdictions within Australia and their respective drug diversion programmes, and the process for AFL players under its IDP. Thirdly, an examination of the self-reporting mechanism to escape a strike was found to be counter-productive to its intended purpose.

The second issue of concern is specific to player character development relative to the AFL's own expectations. Present measures undertaken to ensure players have appropriate education to achieve the expected character development were found to be inefficacious given the doping scandal sur- rounding the AFL and other ongoing unsavoury player civil misconduct. An explanation was offered as to why the AFL should be characterised as a practice-community and why it should adopt a comprehensive virtue and value-based compliance ethical education programme consistent with its own vision and conduct expectation of its players and officials. When the AFL is properly situated within a practice-community framework it becomes much more than simply a game, given its cultural influence, com- mercial associations and community programmes. The endeavour to achieve and even extend the standards of excellence for the playing and coaching fraternity are internal goods yet in addition to their achievement the practice also serves as an important cultural example. These standards of excellence therefore are sensible and legitimate only within the context of shared purposes, values and acceptable means within a sport practice community.

Finally, an examination of the promotion of live-odds gambling during televised games is found to be culturally problematic and inconsistent with its own demands against players and AFL officials. The ethical grounds supporting this argument were also based upon 'fairness' and 'cultural influence'. Firstly, it is not fair to the children and parents who watch foot- ball on television to be exposed to the barrage of gambling advertisements. Secondly, in terms of the AFL's cultural influence on wider society it con- tributes to fuelling the formative attitudes that gambling is part of the game and therefore harmless and fun. I further argued that by endorsing gambling the AFL contradicts its own zero-tolerance approach to gambling from its own fraternity of players and officials.


Annas, J. (2011). Intelligent virtue. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Australian Broadcasting Corporation. (2013, May 21). News story 'all odds off': Demetriou's interview, Emma Alberici. Lateline. Retrieved from content/2013/s3764442.htm. Accessed on May 9, 2014.

Australian Football League Anti-Doping Code Amended. (2010). Retrieved from Anti-Doping%20Code.pdf. Accessed on August 8, 2014.

Australian Football League Commission. (2013). Wikipedia. Retrieved from en.wikipedia. org/wiki/AFL_Commission#Organisation_Structure_and_Members

Australian Football League. (2013). Kickstart indigenous programs. Australian indigenous health infonet. Retrieved from programs-projects?pid=1662. Accessed on August 8, 2014.

Australian Football League National Australian Bank. (2013). Auskick. Retrieved from Coaching_Manual_2.pdf. Accessed on May 12, 2013. Australian Football League Players Association. (2013). Rules and regulations. Retrieved from Accessed on May 22, 2013.

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. (2008). The effectiveness of the illicit drug diversion initiative in rural and remote Australia. Drug statistics series No. 19. Cat. No. PHE 96. Canberra, Australia: AIHW. Retrieved from ttp:// WorkArea/DownloadAsset.aspx?id=6442459827

Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority. (2011-2012). Annual report (pp.11, 18). Retrieved from Accessed on June 15, 2013.

Committee on Sports Medicine and Fitness. (2005). Use of performance-enhancing substances.

In Pediatrics, 115(4), 1103-1106. Retrieved from content/115/4/1103.full. Accessed on June 19, 2013.

Derevensky, J. L., Sklar, S., Gupta, R., & Messerlian, C. (2009). An empirical study examining the impact of gambling advertisements on adolescent gambling attitudes and beha- viours. Journal of Mental Health Addiction, Springer Science and Business Media, 8, -34.

Gordon, M. (2013). This is the blackest day in Australian sport. Sydney Morning Herald (para. 2). Retrieved from australian-sport-20130207-2e1i3.html. Accessed on February 8, 2013.

Hemphill, D. (2009). Performance enhancement and drug control in sport: Ethical considera-

tions. Sport in Society (Vol. 12, No. 3, pp. 313-326). London, UK: Routledge. Josephson, M. (2012). Business ethics & leadership. Retrieved from josephsoninstitute.

org/business/blog/2012/10/business-ethics-insight-in-a-rules-based-compliance-culture- the-question-is-can-i-in-a-values-based-ethical-culture-the-question-is-should-i-in-a- rules-based-culture-the-question-is-is/. Accessed on October 30, 2013.

MacIntyre, A. (2013). After virtue: A study in moral theory. London, UK: Bloomsbury Academic.

McNicol, A. (2013). Three-strike policy to remain. AEDT. AFL. Retrieved from Accessed on January 30,

Monaghan, S., Derevensky, J. L., & Sklar, A. (2008). Impact of gambling advertisements and

marketing on children and adolescents: Policy recommendations to minimise harm.

Journal of Gambling Studies. (22), 252-274.

Ogilvie, J., & Willis, K. (2009). Police drug diversion in Australia. Criminal Justice Bulletin, 3.

Retrieved from diversion-in-australia

Orchard, J. W., Healey, D. J., Fricker, P. A., Burke, L. M., & White, S. L. (2006). The use and misuse of performance-enhancing substances in sport. The Medical Journal of Australia, 184(3), 132-136. Retrieved from -use-and-misuse-performance-enhancing-substances-sport. Accessed on June 19, 2013.

Quayle, E. (2013, November 28). Ahmed Saad's 18-month ban places his AFL career in jeopardy. The Age. Retrieved from saads-18month-ban-places-his-afl-career-in-jeopardy-20131127-2yaer.html. Accessed on May 23, 2014.

Robertson, D. (2013). Drug fix fails test as users abuse illicit drug diversion initiative. The Advertiser. Retrieved from drug-fix-fails-test-as-users-abuse-illicit-drug-diversion-initiative/story-fni6uo1m-1226762 883324. Accessed on November 19, 2013. Ryan, P. (2013). Self-reporting a good idea in theory. AFLPA Spokesperson, CEO Matt Finnis. Retrieved from Accessed on January 30, 2013.

The West Australian. (2013, November 7). Saad gets private hearing on drug charge. The

official AFL website. Sport Section, p. 95. Retrieved from Accessed on June 19, 2013.

Vincent, M. (2013). ABC news. Retrieved from gambling-reform-senate-inquiry/4596816

Wartella, E. (1984). Cognitive and affective factors of TV advertising's influence on children.

The Western Journal of Speech Communication, 48(Spring), 171-183.

Welte, J. W., Barnes, G. M., Tidwell, M. C. O., & Hoffman, J. H. (2011). Gambling and pro- blem gambling across the lifespan. Journal of Gambling Studies, (27), 49-61.

Williams, R. (2013). AFL Figures reveal huge rise in positive illicit drug tests. Interview.

Herald Sun. Retrieved from huge-rise-in-positive-illicit-drug-tests/story-e6frf9jf-1226644351195. Accessed on May

World Anti Doping Agency. (2013). The world anti-doping code. Retrieved from WADA-Prohibited-List-2013-EN.pdf. Accessed on May 22, 2013, pp. 1-9.

< Prev   CONTENTS   Next >