It was at this time the networks discovered that to remain financially viable, tey would have to find additional advertising audience outside of the adult prime-time audiences that the advertisers had previously catered to (Adler, 1980). Alen Kanner, apsychologist from Berkley University warns, “dvertising to kids is like shooting fish in a barrel” (Cooper, 2004). Knner is one of 60 psychologists who have voiced their concerns to the (APA) regarding television advertisements to children. Tey are not alone in their concern. Sveral countries have legislated restrictions for the advertising children.
Geece, fr example, pohibits toy commercials between the hours of 7 a. ad 10 p. ;Sweden prohibits all television commercials targeted at children younger than 12. Nrway, Fnland and Denmark do not permit children’s programs to contain commercial advertising. Aother example, Cnada’s Broadcasting Code “severely restricts children’s advertising, bns ads implying that a product will make a child happier or more popular” (Cooper, 2004). Acording to findings in these countries and in studies conducted by the APA, eght-year-old children and younger can’t understand the concept that advertisements serve different purpose than does other television shows.
Tey totally believe what the images and sounds on the television tell them so advertising to them is ‘like shooting fish in a barrel. ’Advertising to young children takes full advantage of their naiveté, apractice that, i any other context is generally illegal and unquestionably immoral (Kunkel et al, 2004). Tlevision commercials promoting foods often misrepresent their products to impressionable children, a well as adults, rgarding the product’s nutritional values, o lack of. “ealth experts believe that constant promotion of high-calorie food contributing to the epidemic of childhood obesity in the United States by encouraging preferences for junk food and contributing to poor eating habits” (Byrd-Bredbenner & Grasso, 2000).
T no one’s surprise, astrong association is present between obesity and the amount of time spent watching television. Te wide-spread problem, kown as the ‘couch-potato’ syndrome, i likely caused by the ingestion of snack foods which are high in calories and fat content while watching television. A children watch their favorite shows, tey are enticed...
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