Azara Blog: Yet another inquiry into advertising and children

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Date published: 2007/12/09

The BBC says:

The government is launching an inquiry into the possible harmful effects of advertising on children.

The probe, part of a 10-year plan for children in England to be published next week, comes amid fears about the commercialisation of childhood.

It will look at evidence of links between adverts and dissatisfaction, anxiety, eating disorders and drinking.

Children see some 10,000 TV adverts a year and recognise 400 brands by age 10, Children's Secretary Ed Balls says.

He said many parents were concerned about youngsters being bombarded with adverts and media images that encouraged the "sexualisation" of girls.

Mr Balls said the inquiry would be carried out by leading child psychologists and academics.

They would look at the cumulative impact of advertising on different aspects of childhood and well-being, to see whether commercial pressure had a "negative impact".

"We need to look at the evidence around commercialisation before we jump to any conclusions," he said.

The academic middle class control freaks in action once more. Can Balls even find a "leading" child psychologist or academic who is not anti-commercial? No doubt, this kind of "fear about the commercialisation of childhood" was already hyped up in the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, and will be again in the 2010s, 2020s, etc. There is an unfortunate tendency amongst the academic middle class to always portray the world as being at an end, but it would all be ok if only the academic middle class were allowed to banish everything they didn't like. Welcome to Control Freak Britain in the 21st century.

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