Limits of advertising, school and beyond
The recent cuts in budget of education and high schools because of the recent crisis, urged high schools principals to put brand on test copies or toplaster ads on school walls. Students are subjects to a real brainwashing: they are all day long exposed to ads on school grounds, in buses, and even at home on the tube. It is at the same time an issuefor the State, which cuts the budget, and compels schools to find financial supports, and a big opportunity for the advertisement market. Young people are the easier targeted clientele they can find.But is that a reason to put children in front of ads everyday, even at school, the place where we are supposed to grow and to learn?
Ads in school are really not a good solution. It brings problem ofmalnutrition. More and more students are becoming obese and the ads are most often in favour of MacDonald or Coca-Cola, foods that are not good for the health. The number of adolescents who areoverweight has tripled. Moreover, the ads showing top models and skinny girls create and strengthen anorexia problems. Young people have indeed often a low self-esteem and identified themselves withmodels. They are force-fed with ads and adults are green-lighting it.
For the advertising agents the stakes are huge. On the one hand young people seem more gullible than adults. They present anypushback and spend a lot of money in games, food or technology; almost 35 billion of their own piggy bank. On the other hand schools have to make ends meet because they are in dire straits. So it appearsthat everyone, except children, encourages ads in schools. As a San Diego high school principal says: “tough times call for tough actions”.
So advertising at schools is a really great issue. Ads seemto be ubiquitous but we have to fight it. Our capitalist societies are more and more dominated by consumption and materialism. We cannot accept it at schools, the place where children are supposed...
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