Critique on Advertising in Our Society

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Critique On Advertising In Our Society

A critique on the impact of advertising in our society. Consider visuals and verbal or written language. (1000 words)

The impact of advertising on our society is a fiercely debated topic, and has been ever since the conception of advertising in its most basic form. There are negative and positive social and economic impacts upon society from advertising in its various forms. For instance, advertising promoting public welfare has a positive social impact upon society, whereas advertising portraying women as sex objects has negative social impacts. There are also positive economic impacts on society such as providing funding for the media and stimulating an active, competitive economy.

There are a number of proven ways to persuade the consumer that he or she needs the product being advertised. These methods of persuasion, instead of concentrating on the actual product, usually concentrate on the benefits that will be brought to the consumer. These benefits may include the hope of more money and better jobs, popularity and personal prestige, praise from others, more comfort, social advancement, improved appearance, or better health. For example, an automobile advertisement, as well as mentioning the mechanical attributes of the car, would most likely focus on the excitement, prestige and social advancement it may bring the buyer. This social advancement is very often sexual, or involving attraction of the other sex– so the car advertisement may also mention the glamorous women/men that the consumer will attract with his/her fancy car.

Advertising has been blamed for a great variety of negative social impacts. One of the major criticisms received by advertising is that it forces people to buy things they don't really need, often by projecting negative emotions such as fear, anxiety or guilt upon the consumer. It is claimed that advertising plays with our basic human emotions and takes advantage of them,...
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