Ethics in Advertising Essay

2283 Words Mar 21st, 2015 10 Pages
Ethics in Advertising

Abstract
Business is about selling something whether that be a service or a product. Advertising that service or product has to be done to get the word out that the service or product is available but at the same time nobody wants their competition to be stronger. Can advertising be done ethically?

Advertising applies to anyone that makes purchases and uses products or services. Advertisements are used to capture consumers’ attention and make them want to purchase their products, use their service, or interpret a specific message. Commercial advertising is the means for many corporations to spread the word about their products or services. It is currently the most effective
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Corporations recognize this fact, thus an ever-increasing importance on advertising.With the constant increase of competitive products, organizations have adopted many advertising strategies to benchmark against their competition and to attract a wider consumer audience to their products. Advertising does not only serve to inform the consumer, but also to persuade. Marketing and advertising are much more than mere information-provision. They function as a means for the corporation to gain a competitive advantage over other products by persuading and influencing the customer to choose their product over the rest. The main ethical issues that arise in the area of advertising thus largely relate to information disclosure and distortion, the reduced autonomy of the consumer as a result of persuasion, and the harm that informational asymmetry may cause (Beauchamp & Bowie, 2003). This paper will review the utilitarianism theory and the effect on advertising and consumers. This theory says that the greater good is the only concern. With Utilitarianism and advertising, you want your public to experience the greatest pleasure than any pain at all.
In 1991, one of Anheuser-Busch’s advertisements for Bud Light portrayed pictures of two women who came to life after two truck drivers drank the beer. A man from Michigan subsequently sued the company for false advertising that resulted in emotional distress, mental injury and financial loss because pictures of beautiful women

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