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Alcohol and Advertising Essay

Throughout the history of television, viewers have raised many questions about alcohol advertising. Does advertising influence alcohol consumption? Does it has an impact on alcohol abuse or alcohol related disease and death? How is advertising affecting us? The goal of this essay is to collect evidence, both theoretical and empirical, that would address the question of whether advertising affects in any measurable manner alcohol consumption and mortality from alcoholism and alcohol related disease.

The alcohol and advertising industries argue that as alcoholic drink is a legal product it should be legally possible for it to be advertised, and that bans on alcohol advertising would have adverse effects on the alcohol market and on the media. They also argue that bans are not justified as advertising is concerned with promoting sales of individual brands and there is no evidence of a causal link between advertising and the overall level of alcohol consumption or the amount of alcohol related harm.

The main arguments are that as well as promoting brands, advertising is also concerned with recruiting new drinkers and increasing sales among existing, and especially heavy consumers. (Fisher 22-24) Henry Saffer, a New York economist who focuses in alcohol research, assures that alcohol advertising is increasing traffic accidents and alcohol consumption. He declares, ? §Until now, most of the studies done on the subject conclude that alcohol advertising doesn? ¦t affect drinking behavior.

The alcohol industry uses these studies to bolster its argument that advertising only induces people to switch brands. These studies keep coming and find nothing because they set themselves up to find nothing.?? (Abramson 1) Saffer research? K? K Much of the debate concerns the possible effects on children and young people. The Advertising Codes prohibit the specific targeting of minors, but the ubiquity of alcohol advertising ensures that it can hardly be missed by them. Indeed, the evidence is that even young children are aware of alcohol advertisements and tend to remember them.

(Mackiln 251-252) ? §The American Academy of Pediatrics?? shows a recent study of the impact of television on children and teenagers: ? XAmerican children view over 23 hours of television per week. ?XTeenagers view an average of 21 to 22 hours of television per week. ?XBy the time today’s children reach age 70, they will have spent to 10 years of their lives watching television. ?§The American Academy of Pediatrics?? states that television advertising influence education and conduct of children and adolescents.

They believe that ? §time spent watching TV could be better spent on constructive activities.?? Some other statistics that are shown are: ? XAmerican children have viewed an estimated 360,000 advertisements on television before graduating from high school. ?XAmerica children view nearly 2,000 beer and wine commercials on television. Beer, wine and liquor companies spend over $2 billion per year on advertising and promotion. (1) Perhaps the most commonly held assumption by researchers in the field is that advertising works.

There is a strong belief that advertising affects consumption of alcoholic beverages and is related to the adverse consequences of excessive use. Hilary Abramson, describes in her article ? §Alcohol Ads Increase Drinking?? the study ? §The Alcohol Epidemiology program at the University of Minnesota?? has list some restrictions that can be apply in a special event, business or organization. The restrictions are: noooooooo Works Cited Abramson, Hilary. ?§Alcohol Ads Increase Drinking.?? August 1997. November 23, 2002 Abramson, Hilary. ?§Warning: TV Alcohol Ad Warning Could Work.??

August 1995. November 23, 2002 ? §The American Academy of Pediatrics.?? November 23, 2002 Fisher, Joseph C. ?§Exposure to Alcohol Images in Mass Media.?? Advertising, Alcohol Consumption, and Abuse: A Worldwide Survey. Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1993. 28-55. Hanson, David J. ?§Alcohol Advertising.?? 1997-2002. November 23, 2002 Macklin, Carlson Les. , ed. ?§Adolescents? ¦ Attention to Beer and Cigarette Print Ads and Associated product Warnings.?? Advertising to Children: Concepts and Controversies. California: SAGE Publications, 1999. 251-275.

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