- Anabel Fielding
The Effects of Media/Commercialization for Kids
Children are introduced to becoming consumers as early as a few months old until they become adults! Many ads and TV have been marketed to babies and toddlers to watch and become addicted to rather than spending quality time with people or in nature. Studies have shown that children are more likely to be more thoughtful in their education if they do interactive things instead of being in front of a screen. TV shows such as PBS Sprout, Little Einsteins, Baby Mozart, or BabyTV don't prove to be educational or practical at all for a child's early development. People have suggested that children aged two and under should not even watch any television.
Not only are ads and television being marketed to children, but junk food, inappropriate clothing, toys and family vacations for kids have also been introduced for early childhood. Childhood marketers and companies want people to become consumers as a baby because that way, the child will be a full-time consumer by the time they are adults. Even cars are advertised to buy that come with the newest entertainment on TVs, iPods, and LeapFrog are shown to children.
The junk food industry creates many advertisements for sugar-filled cereals, sodas, and other junk food like Mcdonald's, causing public outrage among many parents. Diabetes, depression, anxiety, and gaining more weight are all significant problems for children born after the 2000s. Many people believe the marketing and companies are to blame.
From the 1940s to the 1980s, many people were trying to go against the media/entertainment industry for creating more and more advertisements for regular people and more children to consume into adulthood. They were under a lot of pressure to change their industry makings. Despite the backlash from the public, the media and entertainment industry didn't back down and started deregulation of the advertising industry. This deregulation of the advertising for children grew more profit (money) for the companies selling their products to catch children's eye. More and more advertisements began coming out that were unnecessary for children to see and nag their parents to buy the following new toy, piece of clothing, video game, or DVD for them to watch on the couch all day. Parents spent millions of dollars on consumer products that were being advertised for children. Children spending more time watching television instead of playing on the neighbourhood playground has been a nationwide problem for many parents.