Social Question

cma123's avatar

What effect does advertising have on society and individuals in general?

Asked by cma123 (35points) January 4th, 2012

Most people will assume that advertising in the media causes us to want to buy more and more and more..but what else? What are the long-term effects? On society? On individual attidues? On the way we view ourselves and eachother?

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4 Answers

digitalimpression's avatar

For me, advertisements make me not wanna buy whatever product is being sold. The long term effects are probably a mild brainwashing because if you hear anything over and over and over again for a few years, it’s going to stick in your brain in some dark, locked away recess.. or right out in the open.

It changes how we view society based on the “image” they strive to portray and sell to you. The ad could be for any number of products but still use sex appeal or some other popular tool to impress upon you that not only is this product great, you will be greater for using it.

marinelife's avatar

It makes them buy certain advertised products and services. it works or it would not have continued to be used.

The advertising itself is more of a reflection of society than something that leads attitudes.

Poser's avatar

I think it slowly leads to a society that places a non-existent value on inanimate objects and currency. That leads to hoarding, overspending, and probably a reduction in the quality and quantity of relationships and human-to-human interaction. The majority of our interaction with people outside our family and professional relationships become 30 second conversations with the cashiers at various retail outlets.

wundayatta's avatar

Advertising provides information. Slanted information. As in, it only provides information that shows the product favorably, and does not address anything negative about the product. Sometimes advertising provides untrue information, but that is illegal, and if they are caught, they must stop and also may pay fines.

The long term effect of information is… well… people tend to forget it unless they are reminded of it over and over. Also, things repeated often enough can come to seem to be true, even if they are not, in fact, factual. Things reported as opinions can come to be seen as facts.

Thus, advertising can indeed affect the way we view ourselves and each other. It can influence people to believe what the advertiser is pushing them to believe.

All of this is rather obvious. No one would spend hugantic bucks on advertising if it didn’t work.

Advertising is but one tool in a vast toolbox of persuasive techniques. We use these techniques every day in ordinary conversation. I am using them even now, as I write these words. I am trying to appear reasoned and knowledgeable so that you will treat me as an authority and believe what I have to say. One major reason you can believe me is that I am not trying to sell you anything—at least, not anything that costs money. I have no dog in this fight and thus am objective, so you can trust me.

Advertising is like a virus. What you need to deal with a virus is an anti-virus. The anti-virus to advertising is independent or alternative sources of information, such as customer reviews and editorial reviews we see all over the internet. If these alternative sources are rated with reliability ratings, that’s even better.

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