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Is advertising information or manipulation?

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ranger1980 | Student, Undergraduate | Valedictorian

Posted February 28, 2013 at 2:07 AM via web

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Is advertising information or manipulation?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted February 28, 2013 at 2:24 AM (Answer #1)

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Advertising is both of these things.  It gives information but, at the same time, it tries to manipulate those who receive the information.

For example, let us look at the ad in the link below.  It is encouraging us to use a debit or credit card from this particular bank.  It gives us a great deal of information.  For example, it tells us that there will be no fees for using the service.  It tells us that we will get cash back for our purchases.  It gives us the chance to learn more by watching the videos.  All of this is, presumably, factual.

However, the whole point of the ad is to manipulate us in a sense.  The ad wants us to use the debit or credit cards more than we do.  The bank wants us to use these cards not for our benefit but so that they can make money off of merchant fees and interest fees if we do not pay our bills in full each month.  In this sense, the bank is trying to manipulate us into doing something that will be beneficial to them.

Thus, advertising typically provides us with information but, at the same time, tries to manipulate us.

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