Posts Tagged ‘Advertising’

Nobody Should Love Their Phone THAT Much!

May 14, 2013


galaxyEverything seems to be pitched at impressionable kids nowadays. Films have become less sophisticated, television near juvenile and marketers are seeing the exploitation of children as their gold mine.

Today I saw the above advertisement whilst going shopping, and it struck me how deceitful and pathetic its message is. Obviously pitched at impressionable people without a large quantity of “real companions”, Samsung is telling prospective consumers that their product will be your friend for life. There are plenty of children out there who are extremely lonely that will identify with the notion that technology is their only friend.

Unfortunately, to make matters worse, the advertisement wants us to link the universal aspiration of living a happy and fulfilling life to selecting the right Smartphone. It is saying:

‘To all you lonely, disaffected and unhappy people out there, buy this and you will have friends and a rich and rewarding life.’

The challenge of making friends and enjoying life is extremely crucial to young people and for it to be used against them in the name of selling a product is rather sad.

I know that’s the way the world works, but I don’t have to like it!


Click on the link to read Parents Shouldn’t Be in Denial Over This Very Real Addiction

Click on the link to read Video Game Addiction is Real and Very Serious!

Click on the link to read Internet Addiction and our Children

Click on the link to read Issues Relating to Kids and Video Games

Click on the link to read Are you Addicted to the Internet?


Ginger Beer Ad is Neither Funny nor Clever

August 2, 2012

I realise that this ad was aiming for controversy, but I can guarantee that kids will be bullied because of it:

An advertising campaign from a New Zealand company telling customers to swap their “ginger children” for ginger beer has been criticised on social media.

A media release from Hakanoa Handmade Ginger Beer yesterday gave “unfortunate” parents with red-haired children the opportunity to exchange them for ginger beer, starting today and running until the end of August.

“Parents with ginger spawn will be able to bring them into The Little Grocer on Richmond Road, Grey Lynn, where they will be able to swap them for a six-pack of ginger beer.”

However, people on the company’s Facebook page said the campaign was offensive.

Ross Ronald said: “Awful – who’s next? Kids with glasses? You’ve totally missed the point and have maybe created the world’s most un-inclusive ad campaign. Humour is best left to those who have some.”

“This is a disgusting but of bullying – towards children – and I hope you have some human rights complaints coming your way,” said William Robertson.

Click on the link to read Charity Pays for Teen’s Plastic Surgery to Help Stop Bullying

Click on the link to read You Don’t Fight Bullying With More Bullying

Click on the link to read It’s Time to Get New Role Models

The Worrying Trend With Children and Alcohol

March 18, 2012

It really bothers me when there is a real problem facing our children and instead of tackling it head-on we get distracted by minor factors. A disturbing number of kids are turning to alcohol and instead of getting to the crux of the issue, experts are worried about alcohol advertising::

ALCOHOL is fast becoming the No. 1 threat facing Australian children and there is no adequate system in place to stop them being exposed to alcohol advertising, Australia’s foremost child health expert, Fiona Stanley, says.

The former Australian of the Year will chair a new alternative alcohol advertising review body, which health experts say is needed because the industry-based code is failing to protect children.

The Alcohol Advertising Review Board will assess complaints from members of the public about alcohol advertising, and will look at areas not covered by the current code, such as sponsorship or advertisement placement.

My tip: You could ban all advertising of alcohol and it still wouldn’t have a meaningful effect on child consumption. I really respect what Fiona Stanley is doing, I just don’t think much will come of it.

The Educational Implications of the London Riots

August 10, 2011

I couldn’t help but be struck by this excerpt from an article about the London Riots:

“… what I am saying is that for all of those who live and work in the poorer areas of London this disaster has been totally unsurprising. The fact of the matter is that we have manufactured within our society a sub-culture of sociopaths who care nothing for anyone or anything but themselves and are wholly unable to empathise with the suffering of others. The people most responsible for creating this social plague are the very same politicians, journalists and social commentators who are now asking “How did this happen?”

I believe that to a lesser extent the Educational system has bought into the plague too.  So consumed by its bottom line, so obsessed with the meaningless private vs public school debate and so content to take creative children and force them to conform with a robotic set of rules and regulations, that children get lost in the crowd.

I had a discussion with someone recently about the role of schools.  He felt that schools were nothing more than institutions with the responsibility of imparting knowledge.  According to him, as long as the school could point to the lessons that were taught and the curriculum that was followed, their job was done.

I believe schools have a far greater responsibility.  They must do a lot more than concentrate on prime numbers and single-celled organisms.  They must try to ensure that every child has a sense of self and an understanding of how they can use their unique skills and qualities to contribute to society.

It sounds fanciful and “airy fairy” but children today are more obsessed than ever before by wealth, gadgets, appearance and all things materialistic.  They spend so much time trying to outlook and outdo others simply because they are not happy with who they are and what they have.  The question has to be asked, besides close family members, who helps them to understand and appreciate who they are and what they can achieve?

The media is charged with unsettling them and making them fearful.  The advertising industry is charged with making them feel that without products and gadgets they cannot be happy. Where are our kids receiving the positive message they desperately need to hear?

Children often say, “Why should I be good to them if they aren’t to me.”  Those participating in the riots seem to be making that statement.  Whilst it is absolutely no excuse to do what they have done, one has to wonder who does look after the best interests of our children.  Shouldn’t the school system who has our kids throughout their crucial developmental years do more to help them find acceptance in who they are?  Shouldn’t the school system encourage them better to be themselves rather than conform?

There is no excuse for people who riot and willfully and violently break laws, but when reflecting on incidents lessons must be learnt.  Children that are supported and nurtured don’t riot.  Children who are in touch with their unique qualities and have been encouraged and accepted by others don’t riot.

We can go on preparing our students for calculus tests and chemistry assignments, but in a time of need and doubt, our students probably wont turn to calculus or tests tubes for salvation.



Sparing Young Children the Affliction of Body Image

July 31, 2011

A mother not associated with my school told me of her concerns regarding her 3-year old child.  The 3-year old is much shorter than others in her age bracket and the comments about her childs’ height have started to make the child self-conscious.  The mother is worried that the stigma of being much shorter than her peers may deeply erode the child’s self-confidence.  Doctor’s have recommended starting the child on growth hormones to alleviate some of the height discrepancy.  The mother is extremely dedicated and loving, and refuses to take that option as she doesn’t see it in the best interests of her child.

This example highlights a problem that keeps getting bigger and more difficult to deal with.  Why are young children more self-conscious about their body now than ever before?  What are we doing about it?

It seems as if the problem is getting worse and we are becoming less able to respond to it.

Pre-teens have never been so obsessed with their looks and so insecure about their imperfections. I read an article that points to a recent study in the UK where almost 600 children below the age of 13 have been treated in hospital for eating disorders in the past three years.

Many point to the advertising industry.  They blame magazine covers and their gaunt models for creating an unrealistic perception of the average body size and type.

But isn’t advertising just a mirror of our own hopes and dreams?  If they put more meat on Barbie’s unhealthily skinny body, wouldn’t sales be adversely affected?

What bothers me is that parents face an uphill battle with empowering their children to be content with their own looks.  No matter how much time and energy they put into trying to make their children feel secure and attractive, peers and others in society tend to tear them down.

Has the problem gone too far to remedy?  Is blaming the advertisers and media really worth the trouble?  How much power do parents have in helping their children overcome societies unhealthy and unrealistic obsession with body image and beauty?

%d bloggers like this: