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Demons in Advertising

             Human nature has been easy to figure out throughout the years. This fact could turn out to have more cons attached to it than ever imagined. In the beginning advertising had its place. Advertising pushed patent medicines, filled a few pages of the Sears catalog, sponsored radio detective programs, acted as magazine filler, and eventually made it to television. The thirty second TV spot became the model. Now some advertisements have crossed the ethics line. The line between advertisement and entertainment are becoming nonexistent. Guerilla, stealth marketing, and product placement are the two main unethical agents in advertising.
             Stealth by far is the most sneaky and unethical technic in advertising. Stealth marketing is sending actors to interact with real people and casually talk up a product. These actors do not wear a name tag or a logo shirt, they appear as normal people. A great example that would best explain stealth marketing would be the Sony-Ericsson company. They invented a new cellular phone with a built in camera. They hired a group of actors to walk around Times Square in New York City posing as tourist acting as newlywed couples on a honeymoon. They would go up to strangers and ask them to take their picture. After a few minutes the unsuspecting person would ask how to take the picture. Then they receive a live demonstration on the new Sony phone. Of course the actors would explain where the got the phones and how great they are. Consequintly the sale of the phone tripled within one month of this advertising technique. The strangers leave thinking "what a nice couple and that was a cool phone." Gary Ruskin, the executive director of Consumer Alert, said "it's deceptive, it's absolutely unethical to deceive people like this. In addition, it's taking advantage of the kindness of strangers and that's pretty low." One man that was told that the two people were actors said "I feel violated, Imean, I had a connection between the two people and then to find out that they are salesmen!" .

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