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The World According To Commercials (1)
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In the process of being urged to purchase the multitude of products that ads advocate, we are also being persuaded to a certain style of living. Contrast, for example, our standards of personal hygiene with those of our great-grandparents at the turn of the twentieth century. Underarm deodorants, in the forms we know them, did not exist, and no one seemed to mind. Advertising and Links Of London Charms changing expectations about personal hygiene have persuaded us that certain types of body odors are offensive and ought to be camouflaged or altered. Embedded in the argument that we ought to use a specific mouthwash is the assumption that we ought to use a mouthwash.
Similarly, the argument that we ought to use a specific floor wax assumes that we ought to wax our floors. Embedded in the argument that we ought to use a specific room deodorant is the assumption that we ought to use one.
Reliance on packaged products has contributed to the growing problem of waste disposal in the United States. If we didn't use so many packaged products and such heavily packaged products, the problem would be smaller. Because advertisers want us to continue to use their products, they reassure us that doing so is environmentally responsible. This notion of responsibility was newly found in a climate in which the public began expressing concerns about the vulnerabilities of the planet.
Accordingly, in 1990, a number of companies began using and touting their use of recycled materials in their packaging. Lever Brothers announced in July 1990 that the plastic bottles containing Wisk, All, and Snuggle would contain "up to" (note the careful use of language) 35 percent recycled resins. Procter & Gamble announced that it would include at least 25 percent recycled high-density polyethylene in bottles of Tide, Cheer, Era, Dash, and Downy. Bottles containing Spic 'n' Span liquid cleaner would be made entirely of recycled materials. The scope of the industry's contribution to the landfill problem is evident in its claim that "in the first year of P & G's bottle recycling program, the company will produce 110 million containers that use the recycled plastics, keeping about 80 million bottles out of the nation's waste stream." By Earth Day in April 1995, Procter & Gamble could claim to have reduced the amount of waste it produced by 1 billion pounds.
In the process of embedding assumptions about the kinds of products we should use, advertising has created norms Links Of London Bracelets governing our sense of the acceptable home: a home in which the faucets, floors, furniture, mirrors, and dishesâ€”but not the faces of the womenâ€”shine; a home that is odor-freeâ€”no smell of cat, fish, cigars, feetâ€”and filled with artificial, chemically created outdoor scentsâ€”lilac, rose, herbs, evergreen.
This home is filled with subtle deceptions. Spouses marvel at the cleanliness, un-aware of how little effort it took with the new product to achieve that effect; and they assume that foods created from chemically enhanced mixes are homemade.
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