Friday, February 3, 2012

question everything

We love Adbusters.

It contains probably the best photo-journalism out of any magazine we've ever seen, and their articles are always articulate and concise, and usually left-leaning. Despite their political stance, it's obviously put together by some really smart people who seem to be pushing the boundaries of what to expect from a print-magazine. Last summer, I was happy to find a book-bound journal compiling their collection going back from the past few years. A December 28th 2011 article points out progress made in lawmaking regarding the regulation of advertising, which we're all for, although a few of these points seem pretty fucking ridiculous....

McDonald’s Happy Meal toys are outlawed in San Francisco, killing the top-selling Happy Meal promotion in the city. City Council ruled the toys unfairly manipulate children into purchasing unhealthy and obesity-causing foods.

Sounds like a good idea, until you realize that children aren't the ones "purchasing" Happy Meals... Parents have the right to feed their child any delicious foods they see fit for their kids, regardless as to who's giving away free toys. If I saw commercials for McDonalds giving away free toys as a child and my mother never took me there, I wouldn't have known the difference. Good parenting is always a stronger influence than advertising.

SpongeBob SquarePants is proven to make your child dumb and agitated. An American study shows that “children who watched nine minutes of the show scored significantly worse on assessments designed to measure memory and self control than children who watched a slower paced cartoon or kids who spent nine minutes drawing.” The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood has launched a campaign to stop Nickelodeon marketing the cartoon to children under six.

Seriously fucking absurd... Say what you want about Spongebob, but it's still one of the most creative kids shows on television. (Remember Teletubbies? A tediously slow-paced kids show with basically no educational value whatsoever, and even that was on fucking PBS. I'd argue that show did FAR more damage than Spongebob ever did.) Parents have the ability to sit down with their children with flashcards and play memory games, and watching 9-minutes of a silly cartoon isn't going to simply ERASE that experience. I don't know enough about child-psychology to know how much influence a TV show might have on "self control" but once again, I'd be willing to bet in 99% of cases, good parenting is always a stronger influence.

Alcohol advertisers have been targeted in the campaign to combat fetal alcohol spectrum disorders in South Africa. SA is proposing a total ban on liquor advertising across the country as five percent of the school-age population is now listed as having alcohol-induced birth disorders.

This has a million times more to do with education than advertising!!! We're not convinced.

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