CigaretteAdvertisements and Teenage Smoking Initiative
Thearticle is about the research done by Reiner Hanewinkel, BarbaraIsensee, James Sargent, and Matthis Morgenstern to find out therelationship between advertisement of cigarettes and teenage smoking.According to producers of cigarette who are the proponents of theseadvertisements, these ads are meant to encourage established smokerson changing brands. In addition, those ads do not encouragenon-smokers to start smoking. However, results of the researchproduced amazing results connecting teenage smoking to cigaretteadverts.
Thereis intense effort to ensure that adolescents` smoking is curbed. Theresearch team started with analysis on teenagers both smokers andnon-smokers through collecting data. They discovered that the smokershad a wide exposure to cigarette ads as well as having older friendswho were smokers. These individuals also reported little parentalguidance, absenteeism, and a majority of their friends were smokers.The experiment involved 212 teenagers of age between 10 and 17 years.Participants were asked to answer a questionnaire withself-evaluation on the brands of cigarette they knew. In addition,they were to tell the number of times they had seen theseadvertisements within a specified period of time to give informationon the level of exposure.
Participatingindividuals were grouped into cohorts depending on the rate ofsmoking. These groups included nonsmokers who had a few puffs,initiates who had at least one to 19 cigarettes, those with 20-100cigarettes as well as those with more than 100 cigarettes. They werealso asked about details of parental knowledge of their whereabouts.That way, the team would relate teenagers` behavior with parent`slevel of monitoring. They were also asked to tell if their friendssmoke so that the team would find out if there was peer pressureinvolved.
Theteam discovered that there were many factors that led to adolescentssmoking. However, when all other factors were held constant, theydecided to single out a relationship between exposure to cigaretteadvertisement and teenage smoking initiation as the baseline. Mostinitiates reported their starting to be as a result of observationfrom friends and adverts from media sources. Exposure to these adsled to increased interest in smoking hence increased the number oftrials. 10% had low exposure, 13% medium exposure while 19% had ahigh exposure to cigarette ads. In relation to knowledge acquired inthe classroom that brain areas connect to each other to control abehavior, these teenagers start with seeing or observing that leadsto trying. What they see affects what they do.
Anotherobservation by the team was that cigarette ads with images had agreater influence compared to the ads without images. The fact thatmodules are important collection of neurons affecting a behaviorshows that there is a difference in perception, internalization, andconsecutive action. Hearing effect does not arouse the need to act asmuch as the visionary perception. Therefore, it is perceived as anact of trying out what is possibly done by others as a result ofobservation. The observation, therefore, further stabilized aconclusion that the content affected individuals and was notselective to persons who were receptive to those adverts.
Inconclusion, the research team carried out a research that helpedsupport the notion that exposure to cigarette adverts led to ateenage smoking initiative. The research was done with volunteers andwas repeated 9 years late. Increased exposure led to increasedcigarette smoking behavior. In addition, advertisements with imagesincreased the desire to smoke.