- Freedom: People should be able to live in a world free from constant advertising
- Choice: Parents should be able to choose to shield their children from advertisements aimed at children
- Voice: Parents should be provided a place to speak out and have their voice heard and accounted for on issues concerning marketing, advertising, and their children
- Vote: People should be apart of the governing and law making processes that deal with marketing, advertising, and children
- Change: Media directed towards children needs to be change from promoting consumerism to promoting living healthy lives
- Trust: People should be able to trust that large conglomerations have their patrons best interests in mind
- Honesty: Companies should be held accountable for their actions and be upfront about their motives instead of hiding behind false information and excuses.
- Work together: Companies should comprise feedback and opinions from parents into their marketing schemes and products
- Working for the common good: Companies should provide equal and fair pay to all workers, ensure proper working conditions and benefits, as well as share and contribute profits to charitable causes and organizations
For the betterment of future generations it’s imperative that we work to change the current situation within the entertainment and media industry. These companies have an obligation to provide their patrons with honest information about their products. The consumers are the ones making these companies rich, shouldn’t they be obligated to be considerate in return? Parents (if they don’t already know) should be informed about the products aimed at their children. (“Hey, this is something your child might find enjoyable and fun, but by the way, sitting in front of a screen for hours on end is actually harmful to their brain development and social skills”.) Don’t companies realize the youth of today are their future executives? Don’t any of them have children of their own? Shouldn’t they be worried about how their products are going to affect children? Or will they not mind when their future interns and employees are unable to properly think and socialize? Profits can’t be the only thing concerning companies like Nickelodeon (who aims one of their hit TV shows towards toddlers, even though its been argued that it’s not good for them) or V-Tech (who now makes a kid friendly iPad). If they are going to be allowed to continue to produce these products they should at least be informing their consumers of the affects the products have on the users.
(This is probably the toy your child will be dying for, but what is he/she really getting out of it, besides a headache from the countless hours spent on it)
This type of information should also be more readily available and talked about. The Christmas season is upon us and tons of techno-toys are be advertised everywhere. But is there any discussion on how these toys might not be suitable for children? Are parents even taking a second to question the toys themselves? (“Should I buy this toy that promotes isolation, constant screen time, and no real social interaction?”)
Profit will always be the goal in the current system. But one step towards change would be to forgo the option to make toys that match the current technological advances and instead create toys that promote growth and development. Another step might be for television companies to re-think their program models or consider better ways of delivering healthier materials for it’s viewers. And most importantly, the government needs to take up action and restore regulations to ensure companies are doing their best to provide quality substance and to regulate the amount of advertising done. It is also important that through these changes we foster a society not driven by blind, self centered consumerism but rather work to create a society instilled with the beliefs and values focused around the common good, democratic principles, and egalitarianism.