marketing and children



Think of when you were a child.  How were products for kids advertised?  Were you influenced by them?



Why are there so many commercials/ads addressed to children?

This post will be dotted with different images I found on the Net, which I want to post to make you reflect upon the extent (I would add the “worrying” extent) to which children are either commodified or targeted to purchase certain goods. Look at the images carefully and express your opinions.  Which image “irritates” you the most?  Why?


Watch the video and see how/where kids nowadays are exposed to advertising. It is a trailer for a documentary movie about marketing addressed to children.

I was kindly informed about this video by a colleague (Maria T.) who linked it to Charles Dickens and the way nowadays children are exploited by corporations.

The following questions may help you focus on some keys aspects raised by the interviewees.

Should adults do anything to protect children from the powerful influence of advertising?  If so, what specifically?  If not, why?

What is “creepy” about the way products are marketed to kids?

child-advertising-sexWhat is the “cradle to grave” philosophy?

Who is a “life-long consumer”?  

What is the basic consumer identity?

What kind of companies that you would not expect to address their commercials to children actually do so?  Why is their marketing addressed to children?

How does advertising affect values and identity?

Why is the type of marketing aimed at children important for the direction in which we are going as a society, as a culture and as human beings?

I would like you to think about marketing addressed to kids in Italy.  Is it similar to or different from the one described in the video? In what way? Do you think Italian children are at risk?  Do you find it moral or immoral to market to children?  Are there laws that safeguard children against the powerful influence of corporations? (In the video you saw that in the United States there are no specific laws that protect children against the “assault” of advertising). If you were the Prime Minister, what steps would you take to safeguard children against the subtle conditioning of advertising?

Would you use social advertising to promote adults’ awareness as to the way advertising may condition children?


The following are two short excerpts taken from two newspaper articles. Look at them, they will certainly help you become more aware of the strategies adopted by some corporations to sell more of their products to kids.


Fast food branding really does make food more appetising to children. A study has revealed that pre-school kids prefer foods wrapped in McDonalds packaging over the same snacks wrapped in unmarked packaging.

The issue of marketing good to children is a tricky one for food companies, whose profit margins depend on being able to woo young customers, but whose public relations concerns require them to advocate healthier eating for kids. Eleven of America’s biggest food and drink companies announced that they would adopt rules to limit advertising to children under the age of 12, including not using popular movie characters in connection with unhealthy products. This move anticipated an FTC hearing that sought to increase pressure on food companies to address the child obesity epidemic through responsible marketing. The McDonald’s spokesperson at the hearing claimed that McDonald’s would market only healthy foods to children under 12.

Despite this voluntary agreement to limit their marketing through some mediums, companies are not abandoning the children’s market. At a recent conference, major food companies gathered to hear tips from marketing specialists about how to work around limitations on marketing in England, where new regulation has sharply cut down on television commercials. Alternative tactics focus on the internet and cell phones, finding ways to encourage children to market products to their friends through games and contests.

go2.wordpress.comThe strong power of marketing extends beyond persuading a child to choose one kind of food over another. New Scientist reports on a study conducted by Dina Borzekowski at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Health in Baltimore and her colleagues, funded by Stanford University, which looked at the effect of McDonald’s packaging on pre-schoolers’ perception of the taste of food. Children said that food wrapped in McDonalds packaging tasted better than food that was not wrapped in the packaging, despite the fact that the two food samples were identical (and both from McDonalds). From the child’s perspective, she is simply choosing the food that tastes better. However, the study indicates that the McDonalds logo is generating that perception. (


SNACK and fast-food companies routinely flout guidelines on television advertising to children and deliberately encourage a junk-food culture in which children no longer know how to eat healthily, according to Australia‘s most comprehensive study on advertising content.




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23 Responses to marketing and children

  1. anonimo says:

    Objects that were advertised in the past are the same that nowadays but they way in which "products" are advertised is change during the years. In fact, when I was a child products were advertised using less images link to sex. Nowadays lots of publicity shows articles and playthings having a strong technology thrust, for example, Psp, Nintendo and computers for chindren between 4 and 8 years old. In this way chindren spend all their free time watching television or playing with playstation.In my opinion this is absurd!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    The using of avdertised between cartoons and children’s programmes influenced children’ choise.
    I remembered that, when i was a child, I were attracted by the publicity of "Barby" and all the time tha in tv there were advertised a new model of Barby I was ready to ask my mother to buy it!!!!!!

    The first image irritate me because seems that the little child is spread to the advertise. The baby became an OBJECT!!!!!!! Advertise uses children because they are so sweet, pretty and loving and they are able to catch immediately our  attention, and so they are use first of all to sell an important brand or an important object and secondary to increase the sale.

  2. anonimo says:

    #1    28 Febbraio 2010 – 13:32

    Objects that were advertised in the past are the same that nowadays but they way in which "products" are advertised is change during the years. In fact, when I was a child products were advertised using less images link to sex. Nowadays lots of publicity shows articles and playthings having a strong technology thrust, for example, Psp, Nintendo and computers for chindren between 4 and 8 years old. In this way chindren spend all their free time watching television or playing with playstation.In my opinion this is absurd!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    The using of avdertised between cartoons and children’s programmes influenced children’ choise.
    I remembered that, when i was a child, I were attracted by the publicity of "Barby" and all the time tha in tv there were advertised a new model of Barby I was ready to ask my mother to buy it!!!!!!

    The first image irritate me because seems that the little child is spread to the advertise. The baby became an OBJECT!!!!!!! Advertise uses children because they are so sweet, pretty and loving and they are able to catch immediately our  attention, and so they are use first of all to sell an important brand or an important object and secondary to increase the sale.


  3. anonimo says:

    I am really shocked by the first commercial of this post, it is really disturbing and disquieting but first of all it is worryingly: what will be advertising about ,if they don’t even have good sense in order not to commercialize children? In this picture the baby is smiling, but it is a very sad ad. I can’t remember exactly commercials about my childhood, the only thing came to my mind is school’s products commercials ,they were more frequent then cartoons, very colourful and appealing. Children are consumers. Tv’s commercials, more than billboards or magazines, on one hand have the power induce a specific behaviour of consuming, on the other they advocate wrong models, which are not proper for children. In my opinion kids believe that advertising is part of Tv and even of their lives ,because most of the times commercials are full of cartoon heroes, of famous teen-aged actors or pop-stars. I know I might sound crazy but I really believe that if children are used to commercial since first years of their existence ,they are even more able and skilled to “analyse” commercials and consequently to understand if a spot is deceptive or illusory and to gauge the persuasive efficacy. What I noticed is that in children’s ads the atmosphere is the familiar one ,it may be because imparts harmony and love, and they can identify the same mood of their homes. Kids have a positive conception of advertising. I think that first of all advertisers should adopt measures in order to save children from bad and damaging ads, but if they don’t, parents have the job to control their kids. What is creepy and scary is that babies are constantly bombed by different commercials, and stereotypes and they want even more and more, they became insatiable and hard to please. It is creepy that friendship is not going to be a value anymore, children just think about the latest computer or phone, they are obsessed with themselves, with the way they look, what they wear, eat and buy. Ad experts of big companies are studying children’s behaviour and needs, therefore they are definitely going to know to catch their attention. The “cradle to grave” philosophy consists in broadcast as many commercials as possible or to hang a large amount of billboards on the streets. “We want to turn them into long-life consumers” says the expert interviewed in the video, the society wants to predispose them to buy and to spend huge figures in products: in a nutshell they are planning their lives. The basic consumer is superficial and shallow and it is all about himself/herself, is egocentric and cocky. Girls have to be HOT, cool, hip and turn boys on; fellows have to be, on the other hand, STRONG, aggressive, “real men”. All of this will affect HEALTH :anti-depressive pills, eating disorders, diabetes, high-blood pressure and attention deficit. I would never expected to watch a Burger King’s spot addressed to kids, because it is junk. food, and it doesn’t deal with children! Airlines companies have nothing to do with kids. May be I belittle their influence on parents but I think it is too exaggerated and even disloyal because they are playing with human beings, who are definitely weaker than them. The advertised world influences values, but it is even the mirror of our society, but, as media generally speaking, contributes to shape reality, which sometimes presents a warped and deform image. Advertising can be conformed to ethic morals and values, therefore can be morally edifying. In other cases it is just off colours, demeaning and obscene. It depends on what you are advertising and especially how. Marketing nowadays aims to the value of Beauty: if we want to be successful we have to be beauty. But where is this written? Nowhere, but it is hidden in advertising. This is the direction advertiser are taking. They are building a shallow and frivolous world, they are “stereotyping” us, because for them it is easier to sell if we are all trading cards!! In Italy, according to me, it is quite different, we are not as writhed as Americans!!! But we have a lot of commercial, billboard, spot addressed to children: shoes, clothes, rucksacks and toys, but this is normal ,we can’t deny any form of advertising! I don’t think that Italian children are at risk, we have different values, upbringing and good manners then the country of the video. Even if the tax of obesity and anorexia is growing and kids are becoming more antisocial, it is unfair to blame advertising. It is just a part of the society we live in, there isn’t just one cause, and in my opinion a lot of parents should do a soul-searching, because it is parents’fault. I find it moral generally speaking, but I am aware that there are some borderline cases, which don’t respect children’s purity and ethics. Surfing the net I found a lot of degree about the safeguard of advertisement; I have never seen in Italy advertising as outrageous as the ones in the video, may be I don’t pay enough attention, but I believe that our country, under this point of view is pretty respectful. I would never be in the Prime Minister’s shoes, but if I must take measures, I would be more careful about the “red logo” and about the “children’s time slot”. And in order to prevail problems with companies I would oblige them to have a specific lawyer, who is in constantly in touch with the government. The idea of advertising addressed to adulthood is quite interesting and it could be the one, who could strike the bull’s eye!! As far as the Mcdonalds’ issue concern, it is not a novelty!!! “Children said that food wrapped in McDonalds packaging tasted better than food that was not wrapped in the packaging, despite the fact that the two food samples were identical (and both from McDonalds)” says the article. It really makes me think about it. I think the hearth of the matter is the image of Ronald Mcdonald: every child when sees a clown thinks about mcdonald, if we reflect, it is a sort of stereotype, he is  the symbol of happiness ,he is colourful, he is innocent and the “restaurant” became a circus.  


  4. anonimo says:

    Children are nowadays often used in commercials and, at a first glance, we think they look pretty in every contest: the truth is that they are used to effect other children. Advertising to children does never present a subtle message, because it has to be understood by simple minds, a child’s mind exactly. Children are bombarded with ads, they have to grow as an imitation of their parents, this means they have to be used to buy, but differently from their parents, they don’t have necessities and don’t know what the majority of things in markets are: that means they WANT simply what they like, what they find attractive. In this way, once grown up,  they’ll be used to spend money and won’t find spending money strange to them: this is Long Life Spending! I think that the situations of IT and US are very different, there’s much more consumerism there and they have a different culture, by looking american sit-coms i noticed that much of their "modern" culture is based on ads, take for example Ronald McDonald and the tiger of Kellog’s, they’re often reprised in commercial tv-series. More awareness should be raised about children-ads, it is clearly immoral, but what if you were the chief of a huge society? wouldn’t you like the target of what you sell to be the wider possible? of course, and someone is even determined to renounce to some ideals, as the one of innocence that should be the main feature of a child! The creepy element of the whole thing is that ad is hasting children’s infant age, children has to soon enter the adult world, in this way they can become true consumers! This process has many negative effects that our society is now facing: teen-agers feel as if they were much older, they feel emancipated under many aspects and want independence, this obviously affects their consumer-side..
    I remember disliking ad as I was smaller and watching cartoons, but I can remember a few of effective ads even now, about 10 years later! About fast-food companies, I don’t think that the italian situation is a dangerous one, because I spent some time getting informed about the US situation and I think that the life-styles are much different and here in Italy we don’t have to worry for the moment.


  5. anonimo says:

    The first two advertisements tell us what children will be like in the future.
    I find the second one most irritating because it refers to things the are strictly linked to the body and the health of children: I mean it is not metaphorical at all, for instance, the many brands of food and drink, of fashion: the child is both the mean and the end of the ad; whereas the first one treats children just like a mean, that is that the child is not directly addressed by the advertisement, which he himself is part of. For example, Kodak, Ups, Windows, Lite ect. : it is “more” metaphorical, and, as a matter of fact, less offensive.
    When I was a child I did not use to get too much involved with advertisement. It seemed to me everything was like a game, or something that was simply necessary for us, but I did not feel obliged to buy those products. However, even if I was sometimes attracted by some products, my parents would not have bought me them as well. Little by little, I got to know that all that colours and amazing games that TV showed were not for me. I mean, I thought I deserved more from life than it.
    At that time, I remember advertisement being much more elegant, fine, than now.
    I think that, as a parent, I would intensively care for the well-being of our children, from the very beginning. We are quite aware of the environment who children need, in order not to be brutally grabbed by consumerism and sauvage advertisement.
    We need, as our children come to the world, to keep away them from all the devices that society uses to catch their mind.
    Creepy is the way children are constantly filmed during their life, they cannot feel but as if they were in a film. Children has always to put up with their own face, their own images, and I think they develop a sort of defence against themselves. They are continuously criticised by society and they get to think that the only way to face differences and defects is conform to society, and this can be easily done through advertisement.
    Modern advertisement is structured in a way that it can “look after” the children from the very moment they are born to the death. I think the latter they are influenced by it, the better it is.
    The consumer identity implies that there only exists “me”, “me now”, “me and the product” and nothing else.
    Advertisements aim is to produce the idea of a precious and thrilling future, which can only be obtained thanks to those products. So we see that the Porsches ad is addressed to children and not to adults anymore; it comes that mobile phone is now-a-day the very belonging of a child. Children can imitate adults, they get ready to be adults, and Advertisement make sure they can face this challenge with the “right weapons”.
    I do not think advertising to children is an immoral action, but children get easily and unconsciously addicted to it, if nobody tell them what is true and right and what is not.
    In the USA the are already facing the many problems of health care, diabetes, high blood pressure and depression, attention deficit, obesity and low life expectancy. There was a limit, and they overrun it, and it will take much longer to return to normality. For many children advertisement and Tv in general have replaced, as long as moral teaching is regarded, their parents.
    As a Prime Minister I would suggest the creation of special TV channel, funded through taxes, where there is no advertisement. Parents, who cannot look after their children during the job, can at least be sure they do not go into truble when switching on the Tv. This sort of channels probably already exist.
    Surely the idea of a social advertisement to raise awareness on the effects of harmful advertisement would be great.
    But since in the first years of life, education is totally up to parents, I’m firmly convinced that parents should shoulder the responsibilities; second comes the government, with its laws, to sort out the questions raised by modern advertisement.
    Stefano P.

  6. anonimo says:

    When I was a child (good old times) products for kids were advertised the same way they are advertised nowadays. I do not mean products were similar; with the passing of time they have changed, but ads have not. Kids were and are still bombarded every single minute of their life with colourful, fantastic and illusory ads and they are “disturbed” especially when they are watching cartoons or Tv programs they like.
    Strange to say, I was not totally influenced by this kind of ads: I admit I was fascinated by them, visually speaking, but I never begged my parents or my grandparents for a specific toy I had seen on Tv.
    There are so many commercials/ads addressed to children, because they are the focal point for intense advertising pressure seeking to influence billions of dollars of family spending. A child influenced by media is not a child anymore: he takes a lot of decisions for the all family. Advertisers know that children influence the purchase of not just kid's products, but everything in the household from cars to toothpaste, from clothes to food. They put into action a sort of manipulation. And children are an “easy mark”.
    All the images posted are quite shocking somehow. The children characterized by ads’ tattoos have caught my attention immediately, particularly the ad showing the breast-feeding. It is really provocative: breast-feeding plays a fundamental role for the child and the mother in that specific moment. It is not “only” an act of love between them, but it contributes to build the character and the personality of the baby. These ads within an ad mean the child is a perfect element to capitalize on. With his innocence and purity he could be easily influenced and, at the same time, he could move heaven and earth in order to obtain what he wants!
    Adults should do everything to protect children from the powerful influence of advertising. In the first place, they should move away children from ads and vice versa. Consumerism (as I have said before, childrenare the best “objects” to convince with consumerism) deletes childhood, because children become soon small adults (wrong role!). The world of ads is not a world made for children. Parents need to take more responsibility, even if they cannot be with their children all the time.  Advertising affects them psychologically and adults should defend children from this mechanism in order to save and preserve their future.
    It is “creepy” the way children are manipulated through ads’ technique: companies are using their position of "power" to influence children to buy a large number of unnecessary products. Kids aren't able to distinguish between an ad and something they "need", so it is unfair to expect children to decide whether they should disregard the commercial or not. It is up to the parents to take on this responsibility. Certainly it is difficult to take away advertising from kids since they find it everywhere. The bright idea of AdGames is terrifying… They communicate and talk about new products advertised on Tv, mainly technological products (iPods, iPhones, video games, computers) and junk food and they do not know the meaning of values such as friendship, family and love, because they are obsessed with “material promises” and they do not need “something more”. A lot ofchildren are going to end up believing that virtue is a function of material wealth.
    The marketing philosophy in the USA is "cradle to grave": let’s get to the children as often as possible, possibly anyplace, not just to sell them products, but to turn them into life-long consumers. They are bombarded with logos and brands from an early age on television, on their clothing, on their drink-bottles and other paraphernalia, and even in their schools. They get addicted to ads (a sort of “drug”) and their life changes forever: they are life-long consumers and you cannot teach an old dog new tricks. The basic consumer identity is based on “me”, “me now”, “me and products”. The blond girl in the video says “I Want More”: her ego needs more and more to be satisfied. Obviously it needs material things because it is not the quality which makes a difference, but the quantity.
    I would not expect Toyota to address its commercials to children, because we all know a child cannot drive, so it is not up to him/her to decide about the family’s car. This marketing is addressed to children (“Kids come first”), because this car, SIENNA, has many kid-friendly features, so it concerns both children and parents. It could help many families daily and/or during a long motor drive.
    Another example is provided by Hawaiian Airlines, which promotes itself through the video game based on the famous film Surf’s Up. This ad stereotypes Hawaii as a wonderful place where a family with children can take a holiday in the sign of happiness and fun. Children are going to beg their parents for making holiday where their game/film’s heroes (penguins) “live”. It is a vicious circle.
    Scary, but true: brands and advertising help to define our identity, what makes us unique. While it is not the only thing that affects us, it does affect us all. Advertising harbours the desire to be something different, probably not real and all this can cause eating disorders, stereotypes, wrong thoughts about people of different countries, shopping addiction and identity loss.
    The type of marketing aimed at children is extremely important for the direction in which we are going as a society, as a culture and as human beings, because children are the adults of tomorrow; they will run the society in the future, they will decide the fate of out planet. Nowadays kids prefer a sedentary lifestyle and they seem to be not interested in “something more”, unless material objects.
    I think in Italy the situation is better. Marketing addressed to kids is not so intrusive. Experts do their job in a good way. Italian children are not at risk, at the moment.
    I do not find immoral to market to children, except for the fast food marketing, which is really immoral and manipulative: marketers do not care about children’s health, but only about how much money they will make through their scheme. Generally speaking, it is up to the parents to stand over their children.
    I have heard about some laws that safeguard children against the powerful influence of corporations: there is the Code of Italian Advertising Self-Regulation, in which two articles speak about children and ads; the all body is titled Communication Regulatory Authority, Department of Guarantees and Disputes (
    If I were the Prime Minister, I would “exhume”, bring back Carosello, a true and unique example of safe advertising. I think it could still succeed (it is an illusion, is not it?). It is not possible to delete completely advertising from our life. And certainly not immediately. We should find a gradual solution, starting from using social advertising to promote adults’ awareness as to the way advertising may condition children. It is a great idea not to capitalize on, but to carry back something called values, identity, personality.


  7. anonimo says:

    I do not really remember lots of commercials that were broadcast when I was younger, maybe because I did not pay attention to it, but there is a significant example of my naivety: it happened when I was six and I had to buy my first school bag. I saw on TV the commercial of a peculiar school bag, pink green and white. There was a girl, she was about seven, with long straight and brown hair and she kept on opening the pockets of the school bag all the commercial long….what caught my attention were the small pink hearts that flew out of the pockets!!!!!
    As I went to the store I immediately found the school bag and I started opening the pockets….obviously there were not hearts flying and jumping out of the bag but, since I was, and maybe I still am, very stubborn and tenacious, I bought the school bag because I thought that the “magic” would have happened without the other kids watching…unfortunately it did not work in that way and I had to go to school with a school bag that I did not really like!!!
    Today there are so many ads addressed to kids because kids are the key!!!
    Ad-men have always seen kids in two ways: they are both future purchasers and the decoy that will lead their parents to buy a certain product. Kids usually learn all the songs of the ads, especially the ones that sound more stupid, and they are used also to sing the slogan in an emphatic way with a strength that stresses the qualities of the product. It is simpler to convince a kid that the product is special, than to convince his parents. Moreover to me, nowadays, kids are given everything what they want: parents work lots of hours a day in order to be the bread winners…and they buy their kids everything they want, in order to apologize for the long absences.
    The images that irritate me the most are the one that shows the blond girl sending a kiss to the audience and the one where we can see young girls having a manicure; these are attitudes for women, not for kids!!!!!!!! As well I do not like some TV shows like “Ciao Darwin” or “Io canto” because to me children should play with dolls, play football, have fun, run on the grass and get dirty…they have to be free and they HAVE TO BE KIDS….they should not emulate their parents because they have all their life to learn to be adults!
    The video was very interesting and I liked the fact that there are some adults that understand that kids are exploited by using them and addressing to them in ads; to me here in Italy there are less commercials addressed to kids but they are a lot. It is necessary to protect them, adults should protect them, avoiding, for example, bringing them to TV shows, if they are very keen on something specific (as singing or playing)…but maybe it is not only this: parents should teach their children values, should give their selves an example of healthy and balanced lifestyle…they should help their kids to find out what their interests and attitudes are, by making them try different sports or suggesting new activities, as reading, observing the stars in a clear night…
    What is “creepy” about the way products are marketed to kids is the fact that ad-men try to spy on them in order to understand their attitudes and their undisclosed desires: the film them every time, at the supermarket, at school, everywhere, in order to have ideas to create an ad that will be nearer to their habits: the kid that sees that ad will be more incline to buy the product advertised if he noticed that “all” the others do what he is used to do. An example of this could be the cartoon at the end of this post, where there’s the little girl that tells her mum: “See mum? Normal people get to eat those tasty snacks five times an hour…”
    The philosophy called “cradle to grave” is used in order to turn children into long-life consumers: it consists in bringing children to every place where they want to go using ads; in this way children desire that product, even if they cannot really afford to it, or it is not necessary for them.
    In this way the child will desire a car, a cell phone, an I-pod or a PC since the age of six or seven and become a future consumer of those kinds of products; he will be, in a not so far future, the perfect consumer.
    Perfect male consumers are tough and strong boys that like action and violence; on the contrary girls have to be sexy, pretty and coquettish with a predilection for jewels, make up and fashion. Men and women share the same desire: THEY WANT MORE: it is not a simple desire because it implies that every thing they want is seen as something that helps you to be what you are…it is a sort of materialistic vision of ourselves, as if we really needed an object to be what we are.
    I would not expect car or cell phone companies to address to children, but they do because, as I wrote above, children are the key to sell more products: it is necessary to be less hypocrite and realize and recognize that if you have a company or a multinational, in order to sell your products, you have to find out the best way that makes this possible. I recognize that this is not fair but it is not simple to find out a commercial that attracts adults and their rationality…but on the other side it would be necessary to safeguard children, with some laws because advertising makes the society change: there is a problem with future generations!! Less values and less diversity between different people and cultures will characterize our children if we do not stop this standardizing process: it is not only a problem linked with the future of this or that company, but it is also referred to a global sanity problem; more and more children develop diabetes, obesity, high pressure and other diseases that usually are not linked to children and this is caused by the lifestyle “suggested” by certain companies and induced by the use of certain kinds of technologies. For example the mix of McDonalds hamburgers and the sedentary lives of children in front of TV, PC and videogames will not give the children a fit body and certainly they will not be very sane (even if there is a new product: Wii fit that will certainly help people’s eating problems! -.-’’ )!! Life expectancy of kids will be shorter than for their parents and this is caused by advertising and by parents that cannot stop them….this is not an ideal picture of what life should be! We can see children that decide and parents, who cannot impose their authority, that see their kids falling into the net cast by advertisements.
    To me, here in Italy this problem is not so stressed as it is in the USA….I think Italian children are at risk because they take part to the TV shows that I mentioned above and if I were the Prime Minister (actually I do not want to become the Prime Minister) I would remove those kinds of programs, instead of removing some TV programs as “Anno Zero”, “Ballarò” or “Porta a porta” during the electoral campaigns…I think this would be a double goal because in this way you can safeguard children meanwhile you promote free and logical thinking and, somehow, also culture. As Prime Minister I would also promote the use of social advertising in order to rise adults’ awareness and to make them conscious of what ads can do on children’s psychology.
    In march  2001 a child decided to throw some knives to his mum and sister…he said “there is a spot where a man does this, why should not I do it??? ”.The spot in question showed an ironic and hyperbolic situation: there was a famous endorsement that drove by mistake a knife into his assistant’s head….this was the scene that inspired the little boy…and this was the reason why the authority called “Giurì dell’Autodisciplina pubblicitaria” wanted to suspend that ad. This is only an example of the consequences that sometimes ads produce on kids….but to me it is not only ads’ fault….

  8. anonimo says:

    Errata corrige: the TV program broadcast by Mediaset is "chi ha incastrato Peter Pan" and not "Ciao Darwin"….but to me the level of stupidity is the same 🙂


  9. anonimo says:

    I remember commercial for kids when I was a child: they were creative, colourful, attractive. Of course they sold toys mainly, but also monthly papers for little girls, picture cards, snacks… I can say I was influenced by those ads: I saw those beautiful things on TV dolls, clothes for dolls, plastic jewellery… and I would like to have everything! The little girls on TV seemed to be so happy… but my parents did not spoil me and I did not get many of the things I would like to buy! That's why toys shops always captivated me!:) Anyway, I find the most irritating image that with the little “business child”, sitting at the desk looking like he has already works to do.. as if adults already demand something from him, even if he is only a baby. This is the aspect that I can not tolerate: leave the children their ingenuity, the time to be a child and the time to grow up and mature. I have to admit that the first and the third images are quite genius: all those brands written on their little chubby bodies explain perfectly the potential costumer that traders see in every child! …unfortunately. The first baby is also smiling and four hands, supposed to be those of his/her mother and father, hold him/her; whereas in the other picture the baby is fed through the chest of a woman, whose body is entirely nude and without writings, except for some stars around a nipple. This second image is more touching, in my opinion, as if the baby were more unaware of… the dangers of the market.
    In the past the amount of commercials for kids was very limited and controlled, whereas nowadays they are offered any kind of goods everywhere and in every way, so that they are literally “bombarded”. I think adults have to protect their children from the influence of advertising, for example through not leaving them alone in front of the television many hours or educating them not to demand everything their little friends have bought or received. () The creepy component in the advertising for children is that they are filmed everywhere, as they wake up and have breakfast, dress up for school, go to the supermarket with their parents, meet friends… even when they go to the bathroom! The “cradle to grave” philosophy consists in following children everywhere, selling them products they will ever need and want: the goal is turning them into life-long consumers, in order to create a generation of “super-consumers”, who become totally depending on those goods sold. They are pushed to focus the attention on themselves and to compare their identities to those of the goods they will buy. All that does matter is themselves, the goods and that right moment (of buying I suppose…?). So the ideal consumer is a tough, strong boy or a pretty, sexy girl. What for an example of the importance of the appearance and the lack of values…
    We have to understand that this tendency can potentially change our society and our future and there are not valuable policies about that. Already today some diseases spread among young children highlight bad habits in food, that bring diabetes, high-blood pressure, obesity. Another alarming element is the diffusion of anti-depressants for children: is that possible?! Children who have everything and even more, who seem happy and thoughtless, whose lives are perfect and dreamy… need pills. We have to think about that, because it reveals that also children are aware of the non-sense of their existences, if they are based on appearance and hypocrisy, if true values like family affects and human feelings are left apart. How do we picture their future lives if they take anti-depressants since the age of 10,12?! And what message do we convey to these little men and women? That life is only a fiction..? …
    The first photo, with a little girl on the catwalk sending a kiss, shows how adults can take away the innocence of babies… look at her, she's really cute and attractive, but she also knows she is, even if probably for her it is only a new, funny game. Her attention is caught through clothes, shoes, bags, make up. Whereas the little girl in the second photo seems more self-confident and (let me say this) a bit spoil and arrogant. Of course, she is only 5,6 years old and knows nothing of life, but her face talks for her, as if she were used of those beauty treatments. These kids are born with a silver spoon in their mouths.
    In Italy we have a totally different culture (fortunately), even if everything that comes from America is seen as dripped gold. Here we have a stronger cult of the family and children are children, not young adults (in most cases). If I were the Prime Minister, I think I would promote social advertising to raise everybody's attention on the problem of the relationship, often not equal, between children and marketing.


  10. anonimo says:

    Since when Freud analysed how grows up children's unconscious, a lot of people understood the possibility to manipulate young people to create future consumers.
    Already in 50s David Riesman shows how this process was already being carried out. He said: “if in the past newspapers tend to prepare youth for produce goods, nowadays newspapers teach to distinguish Pepsi-cola to Coca-cola. In this way they prepare the new consumers” they make that the product, the mark becomes a “tradition”.
    These images don't irritate me, I find them funny. They show how our children are so soaked with advertising. Parents shouldn't leave their children alone in front of a tv and they shouldn't compensate their lack of attention for the last playstation and games.
    It's creepy that ads use cartoons and funny characters for packaging or like a “surprise” of the real products and they have to bombard us since first days of life. In this way (un)consciousness advertising takes us from cradle to grave, it becomes part of our life, of our person. Often we get used to seeing a product and its advertising for all of our life and this ad becomes like a “tradition”(think of Calzedonia or Ace candeggina), something trustworthy, reliable. And we become life-long consumers of this product. Advertising sells stereotype and false identity. The basic consumer is egocentric, superficial, interest only in seemingly, self-seeking. Girls have to be fashionable and sexy, and boys have to show aggressiveness, power and strength. So young people go to McDonald's because it's cool going in these type of fast-food to eat junk, or wear the same type of shoes because a famous actor wears them and they want the last cell-phone to show that they are citizens of the global world.
    Often ads pass down warped values, it results from what idea or ideal connected with the product they want to sell. So we have the value of Family and of Joy broadcasted from some commercial of Coca-cola, FIAT, Barilla, Renault. The value of Toil (Amaro Montenegro), the value of Beauty and Success (Volkswagen, Dior…).
    In Italy there are some time bands which advertising is exclusively turned to children (games for girls and for boys, school rucksacks and teaching materials, cartoons DVD…) and they are invited to ask for these objects and become like a puppet. I'm very disgusted from the clown of McDonald's. It remind me The Pied Piper of Hamelin that hypnotized children and then killed them.
    Maybe it is no use causing a stir if advertising influence so much kids and our life because right from 50 years exist this type of persuasion (Vance Packard in The Hidden Persuaders dedicates a chapter; and I found a lot of comics of 80s, and more than 1/3 of pages is advertising), should be more helpful to switch off the tv and read them the novel of Pied Piper of Hamelin. Who knows if they could identify him tomorrow!


  11. anonimo says:

    I was really shocked and impressed by the third image , in my opinion more worrying than the first one.
    In this photo there is a metaphor  of prostitution,the baby is deprive of his/her identity, beauty and freedom.He/she cannot decided his/her actions because from the time he/she coming to the world they are bombarded by images in order to become consumers.
    The society is guilty and in this photos we can see the connection between children and marketing from a infected mother ,who contaminate her child.
    Unfortunatelly I don’t remember commercial that were broadcast when I was I child , but I can analyse the ads nowadays.
    The comercialization of chilhood is one of the big problems for the world “advertisement”, because there is not protection from the powerful influence of advertising.
    Children have a bigger impact on the consumers:as image of beauty and purity ,children are step by step more marketd and swallow in the consumers-circle because of the ads of Coca-Cola,McDonald and so on.
    These ads  create an imaginery world ,and it is creepy because children live in a “virtual” world influenced  by products marketed ,that made they live in a film,because are constantly filmed in every moment of their lifes.They don’t distinguish reality from imagination.
    Like a lullaby children are controlled by the industrialization and one of the more significant example is the omologation:the stereotype of the strong and agressive “man” and the stereotype of the beautiful ,sexy and hot girl.
    This create the super consumer  and his identity:swallow,about “me”, about  “me Now” and about “me and the product”.
    The individualistic philosophy of baby consumers becomes a priority for the companies.Personally I would not expect that videophone use children to address their commercials.In my opinion it is not a toy, but a mean of communication, and in a world where comminucation does not exist the only way to comunicate (friend to friend,parents and sons) is the mobilephone or chat.
    Commercial becomes  so a  security for the children’s dream:the beauty, a beautiful and powerful car and above all MONEY.
    We are created a society without values,real dream and founded by the violence and appearance that overturn the role of the human being.
    On the other hand,if we analyse the Italian advertisements we found lots  of similarity:for example  for the commercial of cars.
    Fortunatelly Italian children are not at risk, maybe in this case our bigotry safe children and his identity.Personally I found immoral the use of children  in the marketing only for the american ads that go to extremes.
    If I were the Prime Minister  I would take strict restrictions.First of all I would banish the use of children for advertisement and television (Disney Channel).I would so restricted because I think that  ads and television do not help children but olny the companies.
    As the baby-model  for the beauty competition or for the platform,children cannot live their chilhood because are catapult in a world made of  muscle and  nail polish.


  12. anonimo says:

    I  know that  when I  was a child , every time  I was in front of the TV, I wanted to choose the channel end this was Italia Uno, (I said on six)  J.
    So, I wanted to watch here because every time advertising appeared on the screen, I was totally still  watching it! I was hypnotize by the extremely colourful and powerful commercials were sent.
    I remember I loved so much commercials during Christmas time. Christmas Father, the wonderful atmosphere of love, peace and above all the idea of richness , affluence and the idea of a “wonderland” where everything is perfect , everything is good and beautiful.
    I wished every kind of toy and gadget I saw. Of course, I understood that I could not have everything ( and this is thanks to my parents’ upbringing), but I imagined me, making and living the same things the children of the commercial did.
    I am sure. If I concentrate me for a moment I can remember music and words of the commercials.
    I remember not only toys’ commercials, but even those of shoes, cassettes, books, schoolbags and food. This soundtrack are not linked to cartoon or films, (there were and there are still now objects connected with cinemas and cartoons), they are simple things that, maybe, are not put on the market nowadays.
    I remember for example “ Coush Coush “, “Lelly Kelly”, etc .
    The melody was extremely cheerful and words were in rhyme, just to make the children easier to learn them!
    Looking at the images. The first one and the third  “irritate “ me the most.
    If we focus on the first one, we can notice that  there are  four hands that  support  the child. Two are mum’s hands, and the others two , dad’s hands. So we are in front of an extremely  dangerous  awareness of two parents who know that their child is completely used  for publicity. He becomes an instrument  just for his innocence and purity, that are “dirtied “ by the same parents who let their child becoming an instrument of pure commercialization.
    Instead, the third image shows a mother, who is feeding her son.
    Looking at it carefully, in my opinion the stars painted on woman’s breast  represent  the internationality of  a symbolic mother. This “special” mother is  the COMMERCIALIZATION, and she is able to feed everyone’s  child. So, we have to pay attention on her, because she can bring away our children in every moment. She is not a  “ MOTHER OF LOVE”, but  she is a “ MOTHER OF BUSINESS”!!!:)

    Jessica L.

  13. anonimo says:

    I  know that  when I  was a child , every time  I was in front of the TV, I wanted to choose the channel end this was Italia Uno, (I said on six)  J.
    So, I wanted to watch here because every time advertising appeared on the screen, I was totally still  watching it! I was hypnotize by the extremely colourful and powerful commercials were sent.
    I remember I loved so much commercials during Christmas time. Christmas Father, the wonderful atmosphere of love, peace and above all the idea of richness , affluence and the idea of a “wonderland” where everything is perfect , everything is good and beautiful.
    I wished every kind of toy and gadget I saw. Of course, I understood that I could not have everything ( and this is thanks to my parents’ upbringing), but I imagined me, making and living the same things the children of the commercial did.
    I am sure. If I concentrate me for a moment I can remember music and words of the commercials.
    I remember not only toys’ commercials, but even those of shoes, cassettes, books, schoolbags and food. This soundtrack are not linked to cartoon or films, (there were and there are still now objects connected with cinemas and cartoons), they are simple things that, maybe, are not put on the market nowadays.
    I remember for example “ Coush Coush “, “Lelly Kelly”, etc .
    The melody was extremely cheerful and words were in rhyme, just to make the children easier to learn them!
    Looking at the images. The first one and the third  “irritate “ me the most.
    If we focus on the first one, we can notice that  there are  four hands that  support  the child. Two are mum’s hands, and the others two , dad’s hands. So we are in front of an extremely  dangerous  awareness of two parents who know that their child is completely used  for publicity. He becomes an instrument  just for his innocence and purity, that are “dirtied “ by the same parents who let their child becoming an instrument of pure commercialization.
    Instead, the third image shows a mother, who is feeding her son.
    Looking at it carefully, in my opinion the stars painted on woman’s breast  represent  the internationality of  a symbolic mother. This “special” mother is  the COMMERCIALIZATION, and she is able to feed everyone’s  child. So, we have to pay attention on her, because she can bring away our children in every moment. She is not a  “ MOTHER OF LOVE”, but  she is a “ MOTHER OF BUSINESS”!!!

    Jessica L.

  14. anonimo says:

    When I was a kid I was really influenced, almost mesmerized, by commercials. I have a vivid memory of me asking my parents to buy me a “Novel Cousine” just because in the commercial the girls were dancing and smiling with chef-hats on and I wanted so much one of them! …unfortunately when I opened the box there was no chef-hat L..It was just a cool way to advertise the product…
    I have to say that the girl launching a kiss on the cat walker is really disappointing: it violates the idea of children as innocent and pure creatures without malice. The girl in the picture in fact, with that pose that would like to underline the hips, when those are not formed as womanlike yet, with that fake-seductive look and that first lady behavior, appears rather as a bad emulation of a posh top model. Actually, I would never like my daughter to be like her…if we make them behave like 20year-old girls when they are just 10, I think that with the time they will regret a stolen childhood! As a matter of fact a fundamental role in children’s growth is played by parents and society, that is why each parent should be aware of the responsibility he/she has any time the TV is switched on. Kids are just bombarded by commercials, images, songs and slogans that stun them and enter their brain and we have the duty to safeguard them.
    What is creepy in the way products are advertised and marketed is the fact that it completely lacks in ethic and moral policy. There is no respect regard childhood and the agencies exploit their innocence and unawareness for their own  business. We are all victims of the market but the difference with kids is that they are not able to realize it all yet. But if parents educate them since when they are children, then they will not have problems as adults; in this way the “cradle to grave” philosophy, that is considering human beings as consumers since when they are born till when  they die, will not work anymore.  Children should be taught in fact the true values that will guide them in their life as “social animals” and citizens… and certainly those are not the shallowness, the violence, and the consumerism of the TV!
    In my opinion the subtle advertising techniques are worldwide. More than the 50% of the sitcoms and the cartoons broadcasted in our channels in fact, are imported by USA  and for this reason our kids are jeopardized as much as the ones oversea.  I think a good solution to solve the problem, or at least to reduce the risk, would be the social advertising to raise parents’ awareness.  Knowledge in fact  is the best defense!!

  15. anonimo says:

    I am thinking of my childhood. Since I have never watched too much telly I don’t have lots memories about commercials and their methods  at that time.. I am talking about 90’s.
    Certainly techniques and principles of ads are changed so far because of the great improving and increasing of technology and change of society that all of us are carrying out nowadays .However to refresh my mind, I watched some video about old commercial on youtube and I compared them with current commercials.
    During  almost 5 minutes of commercial at 4 p.m. , the “ young band”, most of commercial advertise clothes, foods , technology products or telephone companies  and movies. Instead when I was child they are completely based on toys, school products and food for kids.
    They were colourful , joyful and more simple than now; even more “healty” so to say, without any sex background.
    It so sad to say, but in this society chidren are born with the  mark, they are potential seller and the aim of producer is lead them , step by step, to the great world of trade, of  market, of commercial. they become“ teachers of society”, but this is just a mask because in reality they are the deceivers of it.
    The image of  the tattooed children is impressive: a baby covered with the logos of the biggest multinational is sucking form his  mum breast. This is a perfect example of what our society consists of , this is his very and primordial essence, as a little baby fed by the breast of the mother is the primordial essence of life. This image represents “ the life inside a the life”: our life and life in society which cannot  be disregarded , which is  became something natural.
    It really irritates me because rationally I can’t accept this way of thinking and living, but I am undefended as that baby.
    Parents have the task to protect children but they can do this just if they are aware of dangers. First of all they have to limit the time spent in front of tv or computer, giving strick rules to their children about time tables. Then they have to tempt them to do something activ or to read a good book. If they start to educate their children supervising them in this way, little by little, they will probably prefer reading a book instead of tv.
    This is a good idea, but do parents have the time?? Sometime telly becomes a “ good friend” when they work. They tend to satisfy all their children ‘s whims, this is wrong! They always have to chose the right limits to respect.
    It’s creepy the way children are catched by commercials and the influence caused on their brains and their behaviour: by this constantly bombarding of products, which more of the time are useless, they focus their attention just on material things losing real values as friendship. They are introduced in a fictitious world where everything seems to be “pink and shining”and it does not matter if everything is the same, inside this world they feel accepted and protected: they will become addicted to it .
    Because of this they lose their own identity and personalities, that are substituted by the shallow, limited and dreary identity of the perfect consumer. This is the real aim of companies,it is doubltess easier selling products to “no-thinking” consumers.
    Another difference between old commercials and contemporary ones, is the use of children by some companies that don’t deal nothing  with their interests! For example the kid who wants to drive a beautiful car! The Toyota commercial is promoting a car intended for all the family’s members; so what is better than a happy child and a satisfied father? By now they are perfect objects to increase trade. however I found out a very recent commercial that can summarize the idea of stupidity, the lack of identity and capability to reason :  PLEASE SEE IT!
    I think Italian marketing is conditioned by USA therefore also Italian children are at risk as every western child.
    In Italy there are laws against deceptive commercials to protect people by frauds as cartomancy  or dietetic medicinal and so on, than during programs adressed to children , commercials that advertise alcool products are forbidden.
    But specific laws that safeguard children by influence are absent and even if it could be immoral it is obvious for corporations, otherwise advertising wouldn’t have sense anymore.
    the world of advertising could be regarded as the consequence of  modern society and its negative aspects. we are  going against a completely loss of values and morality which distinguish humans beings by animals. But a solution is possible if we start to reason again. 


  16. anonimo says:

    When I was a child there was lots of advertisement for children.
    They were advertised by showing happy and beautiful children with gorgeous parents that buy them whatever they want, in order to make them happy; to be honest I was jealous of these kids, because they had everything, and I did not realise why my parents did not buy me tons of dolls like the little girl in the TV! I was hypnotised by that girl who dressed up her new doll with the glamorous dresses that I wanted so much that doll, in order to dress her up as well!!!
    I believe that commercial and advertisements are addressed to children, because they are ingenuous and you can reach their minds easily; children are attracted by everything, they want all the things that they see… that is why publicity agencies focus their attention on product for children like games, foods or outfit.
    These images can look fun at the first moment, but after, when you realise that they are little kids and maybe they did not understand what is going on, for me personally, I get really angry… how can you use children like living billboard??? I would never let my children be exploited in that horrible way… 
    This video is quite shocking! It is like a mirror of modern society. Parents should protect their children from this bombardment, but unfortunately this is not always possible; it is not enough turn off the television, because commercials arrive in every way: by newspapers, magazines, friends, radios, computers, we are surrounded by consumerism. the only way to protect children if through a strict code of regulation for commercial and every type of publicity; if there is something that can confuse, disturb or disappoint someone, especially children, must be banned.
    the basic consumer is someone who wants everything; he convinces himself that he cannot live without that good, so he runs in the first shop in order to buy what he sees on TV; mot of the time this consumer buy things that will be leave in a closet for the rest of his life. He buys thighs just because TV says that you must have it!!
    it shocked me the idea that Disney Channel commercialised children: I mean, I know that this trade is made for children, but I was not able to see his “evilness”, I always thought, maybe I am too naïve, that Disney was made for let children have fun not for making billions on children’s shoulders… I’m a little bit upset for that! all these commercials cause depression and sense of insecurity in children, because most of the time other children tend to isolate children who do not have the last mobile phone or the last I-Pod or the fashionable bag; this behaviours can be destructive for children, their character is not already “complete”, they will grew up with the conviction of being inferior just because they don’t have the brand-new products, they will become aggressive, violent, vain and spoiled.
    In Italy, commercials are not like in America (fortunately!!), but even in Italy we tent to show to children what society supposed they want. I remember a spot of a mark of cereals: there was a young boy who goes to school, but he cannot focused on the exercises because he had not eaten that type of cereal, suddenly arrived a famous football player on a wagon and he gave the children a bowl of that type of cereals, and in the end we saw the kid happy because he focused himself on exercises and he got a good mark… this spot is quite insane, because it teaches children that they do not need to study in order to get good marks, you just have to eat that cereal and you will be good at school, it creates a sort of illusion, and children will be disappointed when they will realise that is not real. Is not immoral if we made this commercial in a better way, it means not exploit children’s ingenuity. I think that in Italy there are some laws that preserve children like the type of commercial and programmes that are subdivide on the basis of the parts of the day (in the morning you cannot show programme and spot that are not good for minor), but I am not sure that these laws are respected by everybody.
    In Italy, for example, Mc Donald’s does not made commercials with children, if I am not mistaken, but they advertised Happy Meal, which has been made for children, but for example “Mulino Bianco” made spot with happy and cute children that eat tasty and soft brioches, so they involved children to eat only that mark of snacks. it has been demonstrate that children did not want snacks that are not from a specific mark, if it comes from “pinco pallino’s company”, children do not eat them because is an “unknown mark”.

    Chiara Frondaroli

  17. anonimo says:

    When I was little I was not used to watch television much, so I do not remember an advertisement that I have been particularly impressed. I preferred to watch VHS or DVD, where there was  no risk of "receive" annoying interruptions!! I remember that dinosaurs were my favorite toys instead of Barbie. But perhaps twenty years ago advertising was less involving and engaging than the present. While watching with my brother, I’ve seen some advertising aimed at children, and I was frankly puzzled. Apart from the fact that every 15/20 minutes there are at least 6 / 7 minutes of advertising, but worse is what is advertised!!!!!!!! The games offered to boys are mostly games that are connected with violence or with monsters, while the games offered to the girls are linked to the world of fashion, of the show, of appearance in general.
    I wanted to ask my brother, who is nine years, what does he find in those games miseducation, and why does he want to own. As I had expected, he wasn’t able to give me a satisfying answer: he wants to have those games, knowing that they are useless, just for the pleasure of having them, because they are beautiful, because his friends have them, because he wants to collect.
    But I wonder, if already by small children play with "violent" games (take as example the Gormiti: small little monsters, divided into nations, that fight each other for supremacy in their planet) or if already little girls use make-up, or want to dress trendy, etc., how will they become by growing??
    Advertising and program for the children are poor and uneducated, deprived of ideals and principles: they should be abolished! How can parents leave their children for hours in front of an empty box??Television is become the new baby-sitter in today's society: parents, that are tired after a long day at work, do not want to endure the whims of their children, and so they put them in front of the TV that has the power to shut them up and get them involved. The ad aims to create new users from an early age, and so has created a wide range of products for children! The video here above, shows that some products that are of interest exclusively for adults, have now become a possible new connection on younger: cars, mobile phones, airlines.
    Most of the advertising from which we are affected, suggests a stereotype of life and person that is completely unreal. The values are trampled, dispossessed to make room for a mass of goats;  the identity is erased as the single is! However, there is a positive side: in Italy the publicity is not yet at the level of the American one .. So for the moment we can be still relatively quiet!
    If I were prime minister, I would try to increase controls on advertising standards and promote an awareness campaign for adults! But these are all hypotheses, if things continue like this, the situation can only get worse.


  18. anonimo says:

    I do not remember commercials broadcasted when I was a child, but I am sure that the products advertised were only toys or material for school. Even if they were colorful and attractive, I did not bombard my parents to have it, maybe because I prefer to play in my garden instead to remain closed in a room with my Barbie!!
    But today I noticed that products for children are different, the products promoted are technological products like phones, computers, play stations and even TVs. I think in this way children are going to be soon small adults, they are losing their childhood, an important part of everyone’s life, I think.
    I am really shocked by the first image of this post because it makes me understand how will be our society in the future. Children are the future of our world, and if they grow up in this way I think the future will be terrifying.
    Adults should do so many things as possible in order to protect their children from advertising. As a parent I would control my child and teach him/her what is right and what is wrong to help him/her to face the world in a good way. Parents should be more responsable and protect children from psychological effects of advertising. Creepy is the fact that kids are bombarded by stereotype and manipulated. They want more; they want even what they don’t need. They only think about material things and they loose some values like friendship and ingenuousness.
    The “cradle to grave” philosophy consists in bombarding children with many commercials as possible so they could become life-long consumers. The society wants them to become consumers that spend a lot in unnecessary products.
    The consumer identity is superficial and a stereotype. It implies that exist only “me”, “me now”, “me and products” and they want always more! In this way our identity is deleting because we became what the advertising, and the society, want: all the same. So it is easy to control us.
    I didn’t expect that companies like “Toyota” address its commercials to children, but I think this is because this car is big and has some elements that are good for the whole family, not just for adults. Marketing affects values and identity because through stereotypes or models it creates only a one way of thinking and one “type” of person. As I said, we will be all the same; in the future we will be like puppets.
    I think in Italy the situation is better than in the USA, at the moment Italian kids are not at risk. I don’t know if there are laws that safeguard children against the powerful influence of corporation, but if I were the Prime Minister, I would make a selection of advertisement, give some examples of good advertising and I would promote some laws against manipulation.
    I think the idea of a social advertising in order to promote adults awareness as to the way advertising may condition children is a very good idea. And I think it is necessary!


  19. anonimo says:

    Honestly I do not remember advertisings because when they appear on TV I do not pay attention, but surfing the net I find an Ad of “Cristalball” by “Giochi Preziosi”. I remember that when these product arrived on the market I was affascinate by it, it was not so particular, it was simply a cream into a tube, you had to put a little bit of cream on a thin cane, you blew and you made a coloured ball, you can also stick it with other balls and made figures. I remember that I insisted so much that my mother bought it to me.
    The image with the baby nursing irritate me a lot because I think it is horrible to see a baby, full of product’s logos, while he’s nursing!!
    I think adults don’t do anything maybe because they do not pay attention to future problems. I think also that are exactly adults that, leaving children in front of the TV, submit them to the powerful influence of advertisings.
    It is “creepy” that they mark product for kids in a hidden way, we know that children memorize all what they see, so when they notice a product, even in a film, they remember it and they want it.
    I think “life-long consumer”is every single kid because he/she is still little so he/she has time to buy products…
    The basic consumer identity is the super-consumer, the one who wants always more.
    Airlines and car companies, hotels, companies where you can download videos and songs address their commercial to kids maybe because if they attract children’s attention they convince parents to use products or to go somewhere, children have a great power on parents.
    Advertising is often characterize by violence, power, a lot of “easy money”, beauty, magic, etc..all are material values, the true values are deleted and children try to identify themself with “power ranger”, boxers, pretty and sexy girls, etc…
    I think the marketig addressed to kids is similar everywhere not only in Italy, the marketing impress itself in children’s minds and we cannot stop it because advertisings are everywhere…if we pay attention when a new product enter in the market everyone try to have it because it is the moment-style; I think all children are at risk, we must be careful, we must try to help children to understand what is the good and what is the bad. It is immoral to mark the children because they are helpless and innocent.
    I do not know if there are laws against the powerful influence of corporation but I think no, unfortunatelly, maybe if I were the Prime Minister I try to prohibit the subtle conditioning of advertising with fines.
    Probably I use social Ad to aware adults to the way ads may condition children, after years they may report serious health problems.


  20. anonimo says:

    When I was a child every day, at 4 p.m., during the break, I used to watch “Bim Bum Bam” a famous tv-programme on “Italia Uno”. This programme was often interrupt by advertisement and obviously there was advertisement for children.
    I was really influenced by these ads but generally I did not ask to my parents to buy that products because I used to create my toys by my self and I knew that these toys were too much expensive…but likewise these ads hypnotised me with their colours and their music!

    The first and the third photos irritates me the most.
    The first one represents a baby that is picked up both by his mother and by his father: this is a metaphor that underlines the fact that too parents contribute to the commercialisation of their baby.
    The third one is more terrific than the first one because here, the baby is breastfeed by his mother and it means that advertisement is the soul of the growth of everyone and seemed to be that ad is the mother of the human being.

    Unfortunately children are used in lots of tv programmes, in lots of ads to catch more our attention and to make programmes and ads more involving but in the majority of them children are psychologically abused. “Little princess America” is a tv programme on Sky that deeply irritates me. It is about a beauty contest between children. These “little star” must subject to a strong beauty treatment made by their parents or a specialist in beauty and finally they must wear a huge and sumptuous dress according to be the best! This programme is very sad and the worst thing is that parents are more involved then their children!!!!! Let’s your children being children!!!!!!!!
    It is absurd…if I were a prime minister I certainly remove this kind of tv programme…

    Ads or tv-programmes corporations make their work: their purpose is to sell a lot or to be watch a lot and they use all the ways to hit the mark… the main problem are the parent: they have the hard role to educate their babies…but sometimes they are more infantile than their children!!!!


  21. anonimo says:

    I remember that when I was a child, children commercials were not so much different from the ones broadcast nowadays, except for the products sold. The standard of an ad for kids is a commercial with boys or girls happily but quietly playing and the games were surrounded by other accessories and object, actually not included in the product (that was really disappointing). To be honest, I think I was not so influenced by commercials. now there is an increasing number of commercials addressed to children, it is a sort of chain: if (apparently) adults are less easily conditioned by ads, children watch television for hour and usually have an important influence of adults purchasing. It is easy understanding why sellers point to kids, and also teenagers. Adults and parents in particular should obviously protect their children from advertising, but it is not so easy since adults are influenced as much as kids are, they often cannot actually distinguish and recognize the “danger” of ads. But I think that try to make children watch less television (I know it is not the only way to advertise but at least it is a first step), for example, is not so difficult and awkward. It is creepy the fact that children are shot for commercials in any moment of their day: at school, in the bathroom, everywhere. “ cradle to grave” means that industries aim to manipulate people since they are very young and so where they grow they are still easily conditioned and they become a lifelong consumers, which mean that advertisement is just a superfluous way to “remind” you that YOU HAVE TO BUY. Advertising affects values in the sense that children and then teenagers and represented with stereotypes: the strong, ready to fight boys and beautiful and competitive girls. I think this is very significant because we may  understand that we are heading to an “empty” society and to a “non-culture”. What really matters is materialism, wearing fashionable clothes every single moment of the day, have the latest game, “be cool”, and so on…. In Italy there is a law which establish the hours in which certain advertisement is not allowed but nothing else, I think, apart from that; there is not such a big difference between us and other countries, especially because e know that the United States itself influence us. I believe that social ads would be not the last and perfect solution but at least a good and efficient way to raise adults’ awareness and, why not, also children’s.
    Sara T

  22. anonimo says:

     I don’t remember advertising of the past, when I was a child, but I think that commercials are the same, is changed only the way. The important thing is that children are the baits! Advertising agent aims on the little mind because are easy to convince them. Children are amazed by colours, music, special products. They want everything they see. An advertising in this case have a success because persuade the minds. When children see anything, like a game, on tv, they convince parents to buy it. This is the point: advertising agents strikes the mind of children to increase the sales with parents. Parents are hypnotize from children! An other bad thing of advertising is that little girls see on tv beautiful and slim girls, and they want to be alike. Television advertises also slim products that have a “bad important” role in the mind of little girls. On the other hand there are problems with food not only because children want to be slim but also because there are a lot of fast food like McDonald that advertise its products as a natural and good. They use surprises inside menu to persuade children eating this food. It is a bad way to convince children to eat this kind of food, but it is the only way to advertise it. The horrible thing is that in a lot of advertising are used children, like the images above here. For me the most irritating image is the first one, where there is a baby covered by famous marks of products. I think that it is an insane way to do advertising. Babies and children in this manner become an object, a thing, only an advertising. But personally I think that this is the mode to catches attention of people: every common person is striked by the strange, the uncommon, the new. I disagree with this way to advertise but it is the reality. The common is the real, the uncommon, the strange is the fantasy, what catches our attention. However I think using children or babies to advertise is not fair and if I were the prime minister I will not permit this. I will use more carefully advertising and th manner to persuade “little minds”.

  23. anonimo says:

    I think that adults can control what they children see in tv but is not to easy because adults put their children in front of television and they let them alone for hours only for a symple comodity and also because tv is a easy entertainment. Chindren are an easy pray of advertising. Many times parents do not say NO to the numerouses demands of their children. Thecreepy about the way products are marked to kids is not take into consideration the vulnerability of children. In my opinion the “cradle to grave” philosophy is to follow the consumer through the different phases of their life ( childhood- adolescence-adult age-old age ). In my opinion a life-long consumer are children because they are bombarded  from the cradle to the adult age…children are the future consumers!!!!!The basic consumer is  egocentric, superficial, interest only in self-seeking. Advertising shows Girls having a  fashionable and sexy physical and style , and Boys having a perfect and muscular body with an aggressis, power and strength personality .I think that in Italy advertising is different from USA. I think in Italy the situation is BETTER .Marketing addressed to kids is not so intrusive.I think that generally children are in risk….because they are attracted by everything(colors, music and images)!!!!!


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