Television is the number one spot where advertisements are released because of the variety of age groups that it reaches throughout the United States. “Average number of hours per week that American youth ages 12-17 watch television: 20 hours, 20 minutes,” (CERC, 1998). Although Television is the most effective way to advertise products because of how much it is consumed and how large of an audience it captures, does it attract individuals who were not intended to be targeted when it comes to alcohol advertising? Advertisements centered on alcohol have proven to attract all races, both the male and female gender, and all age groups, especially those who are underage. The marketers of alcoholic products have succeeded with these advertisements, but have also created a negative impact to many individuals that have experienced this product. Although it is clear that alcohol industries aim to only increase market share and not necessarily increase the number of underage drinkers that their commercials attract, research has stated that this is, in fact, the direct outcome. Alcohol advertising has also shown to attract low income and minority groups. The television networks are fully aware that because of this specific advertising, it could be causing greater harm then what is intended. “Alcohol marketers say they have voluntary standards that prevent them from targeting consumers younger than the legal purchase age. They claim to avoid pitches that primarily appeal to teenagers and to pass up ad placements that reach an audience that is predominantly underage. Yet, we are told, when one reaches 21, former teens become potentially valuable alcohol consumers and legitimate targets for aggressive promotions to drink,” (Hacker, 2002). Television, being only one of the many ways that alcohol advertisements have been present, has demonstrated drinking as a problem-free activity, discarding the consequences that may come along with it, which creates all individuals who are not completely educated about it, face those consequences in the future. Hence, alcohol marketers have succeeded when carrying in a larger crowd to support their industries, but the obvious question remains; has television targeted the wrong communities or age groups? This paper will discuss the following aspects about alcohol advertising’s negative impact: alcohol advertising’s data/market share/sales, television watching and youth, media portrayals of alcohol advertising, advertising and low-income/minority audiences, advertisements and gender, and lastly, the final solutions to prevent alcohol advertisements from being captured in the wrong eyes. Alcohol Advertising’s Data/Market Share/Sales
A number of research and statistics have been made worldwide and nationally when speaking of alcohol advertising and how it has affected the youth, especially high school students. “The globalized segment of the alcohol industry is large and concentrated in the hands of a relatively small number of companies, particularly in the case of beer and distilled spirits. These companies employ a range of activities to promote themselves and their products. Although longitudinal studies have been conducted to assess the public health impact on young people of a small subset of activities for the most part public health research has not kept up with the ability of this industry to innovate in its marketing and its organization,” (Jernigan, 2008). Further into this article, research has demonstrated that compared to the 1970s/1980s and today, the global market share for alcohol industries worldwide, has almost doubled due to how much it is advertised by alcohol marketers. Alcohol consumption has now been shown to be Americas 3rd leading cause of death, due to the age group that it has attracted. Results have stated that really erupting from 1991-1999, 50% of high school students use alcohol. Although it had a decrease to 45% from 1999-2007, in 2007, statistics...
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