Author and Page information by Anup Shah This Page Last Updated Saturday, June 02, 2001 This page: http://www.globalissues.org/article/56/corporate-influence-on-children. To print all information (e.g. expanded side notes, shows alternative links), use the print version: Children as Consumers
"The Journal of the American Medical Association has said that children between the ages of two and seventeen watch an annual average of 15,000 to 18,000 hours of television, compared with 12,000 hours spent per year in school. Children are also major targets for TV advertising, whose impact is greater than usual because there is an apparent lessening of influence by parents and others in the older generation. ... According to the [Committee on Communications of the American Academy of Pediatrics], children under the age of two should not watch television at all because at that age, brain development depends heavily on real human interactions. Nevertheless, $1 billion a year in spent on ads and commercials directed at children."
Ben H. Bagdikian, The Media Monopoly, Sixth Edition, (Beacon Press, 2000), p. xxxvi
As well as children being targeted via the education system in the USA, as mentioned above, there is increasing concern at ad campaigns that are increasingly
targeting children to be consumers and overly conscious about materialistic things, perhaps even at the expense of human qualities. One of the main reasons for such a fascination in children in this way is because of the potential purchasing power that children have.
""In my practice I see kids becoming incredibly consumerist," said Kanner, who is based at the Wright Institute, a graduate psychology school in Berkeley, Calif. "The most stark example is when I ask them what they want to do when they grow up. They all say they want to make money. When they talk about their friends, they talk about the clothes they wear, the designer labels they wear, not the person's human qualities."
""In the 1960s, children aged 2 to 14 directly influenced about $5 billion in parental purchases," McNeal [professor of marketing at Texas A&M University] wrote [in an April 1998 article in American Demographics]. "In the mid-1970s, the figure was $20 billion, and it rose to $50 billion by 1984. By 1990, kids' direct influence had reached $132 billion, and in 1997, it may have peaked at around $188 billion. Estimates show that children's aggregate spending roughly doubled during each decade of the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, and has tripled so far in the 1990s.""
Miriam H. Zoll, Psychologists Challenge Ethics Of Marketing To Children, MediaChannel.org Back to top
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Corporate Influence on Children, Global Issues, Updated: June 02, 2001 Author and Page Information by Anup Shah Created: Monday, April 17, 2000 Last Updated: Saturday, June 02, 2001