Tobacco Laws and Advertising

Powerful Essays
Lucky Strike... It’s toasted, how far we have come from the game changing advertisement from the American Tobacco Company when they began using the slogan in 1917 “purported to remove harmful corrosive acids and to "sterilize" tobacco” - the slogan was used to rebut recent medical findings that tobacco smoke was harmful to humans. (Heimann 1970) In comparison to the highly restrictive environment the tobacco industry now finds its self in they are two worlds apart.

Since the evidence put forward by General Surgeon Luther Terry on January 11, 1964 which linked tobacco consumption to a variety of debilitation and fatal diseases many governments have struggled to resolve conflicting calls to action. (Durand 2007) Inundated by health lobby groups looking for complete bans on advertising and probation of tobacco products to the other side of the spectrum have been reminded of the right of free “commercial speech” that belongs to industries. As such policy makers have responded in a variety of ways; most have denoted (taken away?) the industries right to self-regulation while others have initiated partial or complete advertising and promotional bans. (HoekI 1991)

Two major reasons are typically given to justify regulation that limits or prohibits tobacco promotions: (1) Increased restrictions will curb tobacco consumption; and (2) As advertising is assumed to play such an important role in developing the habit in young people, removing the appeal will lead to a decline in ‘smoking initiation’. (Prof J J Boddewyn, 1994)The two arguments reply heavily on the view that advertising possesses the power to persuade consumers to adopt new behavioral patterns so according to this reasoning the removal of this marketing tool would reduce the tobacco manufactures ability to attract new users resulting in a decline in consumption. (HoekI 1991) Different governing bodies have been established worldwide to tackle the tobacco challenge the main one being The WHO Framework



References: Hoek, Janet. 1991, “Effects of tobacco advertising restrictions: Weak responses to strong measures”,International Journal of Advertising Vol Prof J J Boddewyn, 1994. “Cigarette advertising bans and smoking: the flawed policy connection”, International Journal of Advertising Vol Howells, Geraint. 2011. “The Tobacco Challenge: Legal Policy and Consumer Protection” Ashgate Publishing Limited, England. Accessed on 13 August 2012. Vol. 5, No. 1, 1986 Dealing With Complaints About Advertising In Australia: the Importance of Regulatory Self-Discipline Michael Harker and Debra Harker International Journal of Advertising Vol. 21, No. 1, 2002 Children, smoking and advertising: the evidence is there for those who wish to see it (a reply) Gerard B Hastings, Dr P P Aitken and Anne Marie MacKintosh International Journal of Advertising Vol. 13, No. 2, 1994 Tobacco advertising - the warning on the wall

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