Top-Rated Free Essay

Should Corporations and Companies Advertise to Children?

Better Essays
Topics: Advertising
Should corporations and companies advertise to children? Since its modern-day origins to the early twentieth century, advertising has come a long way. All throughout history, advertising has been utilized. Sometimes the method used was as simple as a for sale sign, via word of mouth, and even in newspapers. In general, most methods of advertising were also directed at the general population, and not at any specific target group. Nowadays, advertising is all around us. Everyone is exposed to some form of media advertising: radio stations, magazines, product packaging, and even embedded within the World Wide Web. Advertisements have upgraded from word of mouth, to a vastly more efficient method to increase sales. What is the harm in that? Well, corporations and companies tend to focus on certain age groups when advertising products or services. One of the most highly targeted population groups that corporations and advertising agencies focus on is children. Thus, the issue at hand is the well-being of our children. To begin, let’s take a broad look into the art of advertising. Many in favor of advertising towards children, claim that advertising educates consumers about new products (children and adults alike), increases sales, helps the economy (creates jobs), and some free services can be funded (free radio and TV channels). As for the cons, some say advertising causes spending to be higher, due to high product prices. Small companies do not stand a chance because they cannot compete with larger companies with such massive advertising budgets. Too often, products are purchased on a want basis and not a need basis, which in turn, can lead to pollution and waste (good products are thrown away for newer ones). Constantly, consumers are strategically manipulated, especially children, because corporations and companies advertise to “get kids to nag their parents and nag them well” (Fast Food Nation, pg43). Can one really decide if advertising has an adverse effect on children with such a brief overview of the issue? No, a more detailed examination is necessary. What is advertising? Dictionary.com defines advertising as "the act or practice of calling...attention to one's product, service, need...especially by paid announcements in newspapers, magazines, radio, television, billboards, et cetera.” Essentially, the goal is to attract more consumers. The act of advertising is quite acceptable; however, the content of what is being advertised should be carefully analyzed. Common sense can be applied to deciding if certain products should be advertised: tobacco, alcohol, guns, et cetera. Of course, there are products that are beneficial and consumers should be encouraged to purchase them, like educational material. Then there is the gray area, in which products are based around human consumption: medicine and food. The question that needs to be asked now is, who decides what is allowed or not allowed to be advertised? Advertising censorship is too big of a job for one person. Plus, if one person could do the job, how does one prove him or herself to be qualified for the job? In lieu of the vastness of the number of products and services that exist, many organizations were created to assist in advertising censorship. Both government and nonprofit organizations alike have been formed to create or enforce advertising guidelines: the FTC (Federal Trade Commission), NARC (National Advertising Review Counsel), CBBB (Council of Better Business Bureaus), and CARU (Children's Advertising Review Unit). Many agencies exist with the purpose of "protecting America’s consumer" (www.ftc.gov), but few of them have the sole mission of protecting children. Guidelines have been carefully crafted to be impartial and clearly understandable in regards to managing any form of advertising. Content aside, other limitations are placed on when advertising is allowed as well. Typically advertising limits, such as the length of time one is exposed to advertisements, are not too big of an issue for standard material ads: billboards, banners, or newspapers. However, ads in any media form (radio, television, or computer) can be quite difficult to manage. According to Charles F. Adams in his book Common Sense in Advertising, throughout a sixteen hour period of exposing one to the many forms of media - ranging from newspapers to the television - an average adult would be "exposed to a minimum of 560 advertisements". Considering the amount of advertisements an average adult is exposed to, does that mean children are exposed less? Children are unfortunately more prone to advertisements than adults, because children are the intended focus these days. In fact, strictly speaking, the television aspect of media was mandated to follow limitations set up by the FCC (Federal Communications Commission). In 1990, the Children's Television Act was passed by the FCC, which limited the amount of advertising allowed during children's programming. To set up guidelines on what is advertised is one thing, but to need to limit how much advertising is allowed per program down to the minute is bizarre. Before continuing, I feel that I should elaborate on the effect that advertising has on children. Early on, children are easy to manipulate and to mold into what society deems acceptable. To make matters worse, children do not have the life experience of deciphering what is real and not real. Many corporations and companies that have turned their focus on children "today [and] has an immediate goal...to give children a reason to ask for a product... [to turn children into] surrogate salesman”) Eric Schlosser, Fast Food Nation, pg49). Aside from knowing the purpose of marketers, overall health related problems have also risen from certain products being advertised. In particular, a correlation has been made between fast food products and obesity. Obesity rates have almost "tripled in the last quarter century [and] approximately twenty percent of our youth are now overweight with obesity rates in preschool age children" (www.apa.org). I am unable to list all the ways children are being affected, because there are simply too many. By now, some of you must surely be thinking to yourself, how do we protect children from the barrage of advertisements? Is enough being done to protect them? Which brings up an issue that has been brought up countless times in countless places: should advertisements toward children be banned? Since this is an outstanding issue that can go either way, how about settling on some middle ground? How about banning advertisements in certain environments, like say, schools? School advertising is typically helpful in raising money to further education or even furnishing new facilities. Realistically, banning advertisements towards children is not feasible. I ask again, should corporations and companies advertise to children? Unfortunately, I believe they should. After all, the purpose of any company or corporation is to make money, period! Otherwise, they would not be in business. On top of that, the simplest answer is companies and corporations allow our economy to keep going. However, I do not believe it is the sole responsibility of corporations and companies to manage and censure what and how they advertise. I believe it is the parents who are duty-bound to raise their children to know what is right and what is wrong. The parents are accountable to teach them discipline and self-control. The parents are responsible to teach them how to not fall prey to society’s demands. At the end of the day, corporations and companies, in conjunction with parents/guardians, need to accept mutual responsibility in managing advertising towards children.

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Good Essays

    By law alcohol companies in the country are only allowed to advertise at the point of sale, but most of the popular brands manage to advertise themselves thorough indirect methods, which might entail coming up with products such as clothing range, mineral water, music albums and exclusive merchandize with the same name. These products are then marketed aggressively to improve the visibility of the brand. Alcohol is shown as the part of attractive lifestyle, within the reach of normal aspirations…

    • 675 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Should companies market to children? Olaf Maduro 2 B The mind Implanter. Nowadays millions and millions are spent by companies who are advertising products for children. They are an easy target and what they see is what they want. Companies play it smart but how far can they go? Is it ethical to advertise when the health of a child is in danger? If you think clearly what you wanted to be in the future you would properly come out whit a fireman astronaut or pilot. Nowadays children want to become…

    • 582 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    MULTINATIONAL CORPORATION A multinational corporation (MNC) is a corporation that is registered in more than one country or that has operations in more than one country. In other words, business enterprise with manufacturing, sales, or service subsidiaries in one or more foreign countries, also known as a transnational or international corporation. Multinational companies provide some advantages in itself. Now, I am going to explain the advantages of these companies.…

    • 687 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    • Dignam & Lowry, Company Law, 5th edition (2009)* ** • Hicks & Goo’s Cases and Materials on Company Law, 7th edition 2011** • Mayson, French and Ryan on Company Law, 26th edition (2010) • Bourne on Company Law, 5th edition * Dignam & Lowry, Company Law, 6th edition (2012) may be published August 2012 ** These books will be used as the module readers Additional reading: The latest editions of: • Gower and Davies’ Principles of Modern Company Law, Even if you do…

    • 1174 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Advertise Essay

    • 737 Words
    • 3 Pages

    our society a form of advertisement is apparent. It appears on the radio in our cars, on our televisions and even in newspapers. Did you know advertising revenue incressed by twenty-two percent in 2011. There is always some sort of message that companies create to attract the consumer. In my advertisement Pathos, logos and ethos are used in an Stetson advertisement to entice the consumer by attempting to connect to them in each of those aspects. Ethos is often used to promote moral character…

    • 737 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    There are many advantages of Nike being a multinational company such as multinational products and services provide the best possible standards. Because in a foreign country, Since customers are willing to spend their money on the best products, the multinational companies need to keep the strong competitors at bay so they must to produce really high standard goods. Secondly, multinational corporations play a big role in creating employment in the foreign countries. Because of their many shops ,…

    • 846 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    The Huron Corporation Company To: President of Huron Corporation From: Poom Chaiareekij Date: April 1st, 2012 Subject: Business Memorandum Objectives The objectives of this memo are to forecast what is going to happen if the management decides to do something to increase the company’s net income and what decision is the best for them in order to increase the profit margin. Significances of sensitivity Analysis Excel sheets, which comprised of cost of goods manufactured, cost of goods…

    • 378 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    for forming CCS as a C corporation, S corporation, LLC, or partnership. Explain your reasoning for your choice of entity, identify any issues that you may still be concerned about, and suggest recommendations for dealing with the concerns. Chapter 19 Problem 39 (LO2) Zhang incorporated her sole proprietorship by transferring inventory, a building, and land to the corporation in return for 100 percent of the corporation’s stock. The property transferred to the corporation had the following fair…

    • 290 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    advertises campaign

    • 1560 Words
    • 5 Pages

    Domain in Digital Media: video game culture is used as a metaphor to interpret local digital culture(Leonardo, Volume 44, Number 1, February 2011, pp. 90-91). How many different modes of interaction can be used in video games? The example of Mario’s Furniture shows me a direction to investigate. Mario’s Furniture is an interactive video installation integrating computer vision and wireless technology with artistic production and performance. A wireless environment, where viewers become players. Able…

    • 1560 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Running Head: Starbucks Corporation Starbucks Corporation: Company Study April 15, 2014 Siena Heights University Case Statement: Starbucks is a globally expanding cooperation with many future opportunities and they will continue to strive to be the world’s greatest coffee company. Mission Statement: Starbucks Corporation’s current mission statement inspires the goodness of the communities and people they reach out to on a daily basis. Their mission statement…

    • 4912 Words
    • 39 Pages
    Powerful Essays