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Reducing Underage Drinking: A Collective Responsibility
FIGURE 7-1 Measured media advertising expenditures for alcohol products, 1992-2002, in 2002 dollars (adjusted for inflation).
SOURCE: Data from LNA/Mediawatch multimedia service, competitive media reporting (expenditure) and McCann-Erikson world group (media cost-per-thousand composite index).
issues in the alcohol prevention field. The question is complex, both empirically and legally. Before turning to the controversial aspects, however, we present the undisputed points.
Alcohol advertising is designed to highlight the attractions of using alcohol, especially to enhance the enjoyment of social occasions, and to induce or persuade potential consumers to feel favorably toward the promoted product. Even though these messages may not be intentionally targeted at youths under 21, messages aimed at “young adults” (e.g., ages 21-to 25-year-olds) will inevitably reach older teens (e.g., ages 16- to 20-year-olds); moreover, many of those messages will also be attractive to children and teenagers (those under 16). A particularly troubling illustration of the youth-specific attractions of an alcohol marketing campaign concerns so-called “alcopops,” sweet, flavored alcoholic malt beverages. Recent survey data suggest that these products are more popular with teenagers than with adults, in terms of both awareness and use. These concerns recently led