Resources Proposal

The American Medical Association’s (AMA) mission is for the betterment of the public health and to advance the interests of physicians and patients. As the largest and highest respected professional association of physicians, I decided to use AMA as my society resource as to the health sectors response to the health affects of misleading overly airbrushed advertisements have on the public. 

This report the AMA put out in 2011 about the New Policies that were adopted by the association after their annual meeting include a new policy implemented about guidelines for advertising to the youth.

Due to the links to “exposure to media-propagated images of unrealistic body image to eating disorder and other child and adolescent health problems,” the AMA adopted a new policy to “encourage advertising associations to work with public and private sector organizations concerned with child and adolescent health to develop guidelines for advertisements, especially those appealing in teen-oriented publications.”

To “discourage the altering of photographs in a manner that could promote unrealistic expectations of appropriate body image,” is the ultimate goal of this policy implementation. Since the adolescent cohort is the most susceptible to damage due to their malleability, I think this policy is essential. Although the AMA has implemented this Body Image and Advertising to Youth policy, I do not think the AMA ample leverage encourage businesses and advertising associations without government intervention.

For my government resources, I am using the Federal Trade Commission to look further into the parameters of false advertising.  This Policy Statement on Deception declares deceptive advertisements to be “unfair or deceptive acts or unlawful practices”. This FTC Policy statement ultimately led to the FTC to enforce a deception mandate on false advertising.

In using this resource, I am planning of bridging parallels of false advertisements and extreme photo enhancement advertisement. I view this source being applicable, especially pertaining to the cosmetics industry. False representation of products by means of digitally enhanced advertisements range from anti-wrinkle creams featuring models whose skin have been digitally retouched to smoothness to mascara that sport unnaturally thick and long lashing. These advertisements retouch photos beyond the benefit of the product advertised could ever provide customers.

I am using the advertising industry watchdog, the National Advertising Industry as my business resource. The NAD is division A service of the advertising industry and Council of Better Business Bureau (ASRC), which serves as an intermediary between businesses and consumers.

Although this watchdog agency has taken proactive measures to challenge companies that release advertisements they feel do not hold truthful and accurate product demonstration, the agency can only handle so much volume.

Notably, the NAD has taken action against companies that have incorporated post-production enhancement by properly disclosing actions on the advertisments. This has particularly caught media attention with the recent Taylor Swift CoverGirl LuxeLash advertisements.  While the NAD has taken active measure to protect consumers from deceptive advertisements, they can only do so much without some sort of government intervention.


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