October 13, 2013

Not Only Adults Not Supposed to Like Sweets, Sex & Sports Out Too

Exciting news!  Top X Reasons… articles aren't just relegated to the blogosphere any longer.  They've made the jump to the newspaper realm.  A paper out of upstate New York ran a top 7 list furnished by a prohibitionist group.  The reasons why the FDA should heavily regulate controls.  Apparently, e-cigarette companies, like the tobacco companies before them were the only ones who ever thought of using things like celebrities, attractive people and sporting events to sell products.

APOV: Seven reasons the FDA should regulate e-cigarettes
1. They have celebrity spokespeople.

Like cigarette ads of old, television, online and print ads for e-cigarettes feature catchy slogans and celebrity endorsers, including actor Stephen Dorff and rock musician Courtney Love for NJOY. Their message: Using these products is trendy and cool.

2. Their magazine ads feature rugged men … and glamorous women.

These ads feature today’s equivalents of the Marlboro Man and the Virginia Slims woman, depicting e-cigarette use as masculine, sexy or rebellious. E-cigarette ads have appeared in magazines that reach millions of teens, including Rolling Stone, Sports Illustrated, InStyle and Us Weekly.

3. They know sex sells.

Like cigarette companies have long done, e-cigarette makers portray use of their products as sexually attractive. The allure for young people to start using is just as real; particularly in the Internet age we live in.

4. They sponsor sports … and music festivals.

For decades tobacco companies used sponsorships of sports and entertainment events, especially auto racing and music festivals, to promote cigarettes to huge audiences, including kids. Cigarette sponsorships are now banned, however today e-cigarette brands have auto racing sponsorships of their own. The Blu Cig company is one of them.

5. Their products come in sweet flavors.

A 2009 federal law banned fruit- and candy-flavored cigarettes, but many e-cigarette companies gleefully pitch similar flavors. Apollo Vapors, for example, offers Almond Joyee (“the candy bar taste without the calories!”), French Vanilla (“like biting into a deliciously sweet vanilla cupcake”) and Banana Cream (“yummy ambrosia of bananas and whipped cream”).

6. They use cartoons.

The website for blu eCigs has featured a cartoon pitchman named “Mr. Cool.” It was reminiscent of the Joe Camel cartoon character that so effectively marketed cigarettes to kids in the 1990s.

7. Their ads say, “Switch, Don’t Quit.”

Tobacco companies have long tried to discourage smokers from quitting by marketing cigarette changes as reducing health risk. Some e-cigarette ads carry a similar message. No wonder youth e-cigarette use is on the rise. These developments underscore the need for the FDA to quickly regulate e-cigarettes and take steps to prevent their marketing and sale to kids.

I feel bad for quoting the entire list, but just one of these didn't quite capture the lack of substance behind these articles.  Since no product uses these things to market to people after all.  And certainly adults don't like pretty people, racing or other things.  And Courtney Love?  Really?  Really!? Ok, so adults don't really like her either, but at least they know who the hell she is. But wait, there's more, I'm having trouble finding this Mr. Cool ad, Google Image search only turns up pictures of their existing adds… and some guy with an unfortunate medical condition (you've been warned.)

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