Our world has become one of advertisements, marketing is everywhere.
The deregulation of marketing happened in 1984, I was 2 years old at the time. I have grown up, basically, my entire life being brought up around marketing. I never thought about how pervasive it was as a child, I don’t think any child has the cognitive powers or reasoning powers to understand how bad all this advertisement consumption is.
In my adult life I have worked hard to minimize the influence of advertisements, I don’t subscribe to cable, or even have my TV hooked up to basic free channels, I use ad blockers on my browser when I’m online, and still they are able to get to me. There is product placement in movies and tv shows, just walking into any store I see it, people wear it, its on bill boards, its so infiltrated in our culture that it’s impossible to get away from, like in the bathroom!
How are kids supposed to deal with this? Studies are showing the increases in health problems such as ADHD, Bipolar Disorder, Diabetes, and the ages the diagnoses are happening are younger and younger in children. I myself have depression and bipolar disorder, and have been doing well managing it without tons of prescriptions, but that is because I work hard to manage it through keeping myself balanced and healthy in this increasing world of junk food, junk television, junk everything. I practically have to boycott things on a personal level just to keep myself in some level of sanity.
I wonder if bringing a child into this world is even a good idea these days. Perhaps if I do, I will do it in another country where they have regulations and as a parent I would have more say in how I raise my child. I remember growing up and spending lots of my time in front of the tv and on the computer. And my mom had measures to keep me from it, like taking power cords and locking me out of the technology, and it probably helped save me from even more negative effects.
But, at the same time, I remember being raised by the television, those memories are stronger for me then many of my memories of playing with other children. I have trouble remember things and have had to adopt totally new ways of doing things with technology to help me remember what I did a few hours ago. I feel that I have classic ADHD, tho I have never been diagnosed, the techniques that I have learned by studying ADHD and how to cope have helped me enormously in my day to day life. I can’t help but wonder if many of my mental health issues (not all), were because of the heavy influences of marketing in my childhood.
After watching this video “Consuming Kids” it really brings to light the epidemic’s we, as a nation, are creating in our children by not regulating marketing directly to them. And now, because it is so infiltrated in our culture in America, it will be really difficult to fight it, to treat it, and if things don’t change, our future generations will be even worse off, just for companies to make some money.
Watch it now: