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Manipulative communication

Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don’t need. We’re the middle children of history, man. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression. Our great war is a spiritual war. Our great depression is our lives. We’ve all been raised on television to believe that one day we’d all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars, but we won’t. And we’re slowly learning that fact. And we’re very, very pissed off, Fight Club (film)

It is very important to be aware of the persuasive and perversive power of advertising in our society. For example, you should know that big corporations and many companies spend big money on advertising aimed at children, and more specifically, at their diet. Let me be even more specific, I am talking about sugary cereals, salty snacks, fast food, and fizzy drinks. Advertising is legalized lying, H. G. Wells

Advertising is legalized lying, H. G. Wells

They know that children are unaware of the persuasive power of advertising and then children encourage their parents to buy them those advertised products regardless of whether they are unhealthy, pricey, or both. They use them as brand ambassadors!

Advertising is ubiquitous. It is present in the life of almost every human being in the world, in almost every aspect of our daily lives. It includes: television and radio commercials; sites, apps, search engines, video sharing services, and social media; billboards and street furniture; magazine and newspaper print ads; store catalogues; sponsorship of events, teams, and leagues; famous celebrities endorsing commercial products, even operating systems like Windows 10/11 are nothing more than a vehicle for advertisements.

Furthermore, zapping, ad blocker plugins, video-recording devices and their option of fast-forwarding through commercial breaks are making commercial interruptions less and less effective. However, the industry is always fighting back. For instance, they use on-line advertising (web banners, email marketing, video sharing services, and social media), app advertising, and product placement. This is the inclusion or reference of products, services, and trade marks in TV shows, series, video games, and films: Home Alone (Pepsi), E.T. (Reese’s Pieces), I-Robot (Converse), etc.

What can we do?

The computer, tablet, video game console or television are not nannies or babysitters! Moreover, they are not a family member either.

It is very important to rationalize their use, for example, we need to set limits for watching television or playing video games. Parents should control the content of the programs their children are watching and the amount of time they are spending watching TV, video sharing sites and apps. Don’t turn the television on unless there is a specific program you want to see. Turn it off afterward.

Use parental control apps to track kids’ phone use and screen time.

If we all change our buying and consuming habits and put pressure on our politicians and fellow citizens through social media, video sharing sites and apps, and political activism, big corporations and companies will follow suit and will stop making junk food, polluting the environment, and designing products with a limited lifespan.If we want to get anything done, we need to be the change we want to see in the world and lead by example.

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