Tuesday, October 27, 2015

The Bad Ads

Mike Smith

Bad Ads
One Facebook Ad did a terrible thing recently. Ionechat.com is a dating site that published an ad on Facebook that included a picture of a 17 year girl that recently hung herself. The headline was "Find Love in Canada." 

As a result of this Ad, the girl's family was reminded and put through her death once again. Her father said "I don't even know what to say," in response to the ad. In fact, his daughter getting cyber-bullied was one of the things that appeared to be a reason for her committing suicide. 

I think it is awful how this ad was published. This kind of thing should not happen since the girl in the photo is no longer living and is under aged. Facebook must do a better job of policing the ads that are posted, so an incident like this does not happen again. 

Facebook takes this risk by having a self-serve advertising business model. Facebook puts a lot of trust in its users to not make stupid decisions like the one in this instance. 

I respect Facebook trusting their users, but they have to do a better job of policing it. I do not think it is smart to give users this much freedom, so they can post ads like this. A little policing by Facebook needs to be done to prevent things like this from happening in the future. 

Facebook's instant reaction to this horrible ad was awesome, though. They acted swiftly by banning Ionechat.com permanently and removing the ad. Facebook showing no tolerance for this crap was a good showing and the victim's family appreciated it. 

At first, I thought that the beer ads would be the worst for children's eyes since those ads convincingly talk about how cool beer is. After second thought, ads about the new video game system or new toy is worse. 

I remember growing up and always wanting the cool new thing that was in the ads on TV. And I would usually know one person at school with it, so I would want it even more. I never got very down on myself about not having the newest, coolest thing but I do see how a young kid could easily have their self-esteem lowered by not having it. 

Our society today loves judging people off the things they have so much. Advertisements are not the only things promoting that thinking, but they still promote it. I understand that it is people's jobs to make their ad so enticing so that everyone in their directed audience will want the product. 

However, I think there is a way to do that by not lowering children's self-esteem. For example, the ads usually contain people that look perfect with no flaws, which is not realistic. The perfect looking people in these ads can lower children's self esteem because they may not look that good. How about the ads include regular looking people so that does not happen? Just a simple idea.
Source: sites.psu.edu 
Another idea is to include things that almost everyone can afford. For example, when showing the new video gaming system, show the handheld version of the system that is much cheaper, too. Not everyone can afford the handheld version but many more can. 

In conclusion, I think there is a lot of room for improvement in advertising. Ads will never be perfect, but they can certainly be improved by just making a few adjustments. 

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