The Effects Of Advertising On Society

531 words - 2 pages

The Effects of Advertising on Society

     Fr. Kavanaugh was on the mark when describing the effects of advertising
on society. Our moral values are being degraded by the bombardment of
impropriety by the media. Adler would be quick in pointing out the reason why
these messages have such a negative effect on people. There are two main
tactics advertisers use to sell their product: either imply that their product
will bring about the achievement of a particular (usually real) good, or make
their product the object of desire, therefore making it an apparent good to
people. The problem with associating products with the achievement of a good
lies more in the realm of truth than in good, because it lies in whether or not
the product can truly live up to its claims. The relation between a product and
the achievement of a good is an objective truth, though the goodness of said
product may not be. The statement that Product X will make you more popular,
solve your problems, or let you lead a happy life (statements usually implied in
these advertisements) are generally not true. When advertisers make these
statements, therefore, they are directly misleading the public. The other
tactic used, however, is a bigger problem, being not only harder to identify but
having more problematic effects. Since society likes to think of the good as a
subjective thing, it would seem to be acceptable for advertisers to qualify
their products as being good. However, Adler shows that some goods (namely
needs dictated by human nature) are universal to all people. Advertisers
commonly exploit this by associating their products not with the apparent good
they are truly associated with, but with one of those real goods. Though these
products are by...

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