Ideology masked as scientific truth: the debate about advertising and children

Attacks on advertising often cite apparently scientific evidence that children cannot understand advertising’s persuasive character and are drawn, in response to advertising, to smoke, eat unhealthily and/or drink under age Luik argues that such claims are selective, misinterpret or misrepresent the evidence and draw unwarranted conclusions.

Ideology masked as scientific truth: the debate about advertising and children

Dr. John C. Luik


Ever since the publication of Vance Packard's The Hidden Persuaders, it has been de rigueuramong the “right-thinking” to dismiss both the advertising industry and its patrons as moral myopics at best and at worst moral outlaws unworthy of consideration in a civilized society. For many in the policy-making establishment, it has become an ideological “fact” that advertising, except in the service of state-sanctioned causes, is an evil that even democracies with constitutional safeguards for commercial speech would be better without....

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