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OTHER ITA SITES:
Advertising Ė Friend, Not Foe!
They say advertising is excessive: it interrupts TV series, preceding movie shows and dominating music award ceremonies. Some even lament that advertising not only occupies the media, but is also present everywhere else; the latest music editor softwares could be seen at bus shelters, and online VoIP products pictured in public telephone booths. It is irrelevant and disruptive.
If you agree with my last sentence above, continue reading. You might decide to change your mind.
First of all, I donít think advertisers occupy the media. As a matter of fact, it is the media that courts companies, maybe except for over-popular shows. TV stations need funds to run your favorite programs, and radio broadcasts have to pay for the Music on Demand. It boils down to us consumers: we demand, and the media provides, at a price of course.
Ah, you might now argue that it is the advertisers who flock to the media and pay for available ad space. True! But how many time slots are so coveted over? Shows like the Super Bowl Football are rare. Other less endowed channels, in fact, have some hard time securing long-term ad contracts to be financially sufficient. It is thus fair to conclude that advertisers and the media, and us, are in a multilateral relationship.
Besides its commercial relevance, there is more to this misunderstood industry that we often miss out on, like how advertisements might effect cultural understanding, especially in this globalizing world of business. HSBC features newspaper ads of cultural differences across countries. FedEx has their TV ads filmed in Japan, showing the way Japanese people live and work. And I actually learned from a MasterCard ad that in India, people release white doves for luck. Interesting, isnít it?
In addition, informative ads feed useful information to our preoccupied minds. Public service messages could be conveyed effectively through ad-works on air. And people get to know the latest products available on market during review hours. I mean, it would be a pity if we work so hard to produce all these commodities just to, in the end, know nothing of them. And because we work so hard, we could hardly afford to find out about whatís going on ourselves. Informative ads keep our society functioning as it is meant to.
But most of all, advertisers are creative (e-mails are not advertisements; they are spam). The appealing advertisements that crack you up or hook your eyes for the hundredth time take much more than the 30 seconds of airtime. Creativity, and the resulted attention, increases sales, and the advertising environment is so competitive nowadays it truly stimulates the human edge of creativity and nurtures it to flourish. Advertising signifies the human drive to succeed.
To me, what makes modern advertising desirable, besides bridging cultural gap, informing the populace or generating new ideas, is that it empowers every individual possible. It no longer takes an established firm to put up an ad. Any one anywhere can promote their ideas, products and even themselves through the thriving medium of the internet. 15-year-olds can now economically design and effect ads to promote their companies (yes, donít look down on these young entrepreneurs). Any one could adopt different voices using voice changer softwares, and edit audio as well as video ads with the many music editor softwares and video editor softwares available. Because advertising could so omnipotently enable far-reaching creativity of expressions, it is relevant to our human society that values progressing thoughts and selective reception of ideas.
The staunchest critics of advertising might ask, what would be the future of advertising, now when people are able to get rid of the commercials. MythTV offers a plug-in that automatically filters out commercials during recording, whereas video editor softwares allow you to freely cut out unwanted ads from pre-recorded clips. Yes, people are actually paying to be free of advertisements.
But hey, think again! Advertising is not that inconsiderate. Have you ever listened to radio broadcasts so excessively loaded with audio commercials itís impossible to follow? And advertising might be excessive and disruptive, but I suppose only to a minority few. In fact, like I have said, informative ads are actually desirable. Donít you or your children feel excluded if you are not aware of the new iPod, or the latest music editor gadgets?
Trust the media. They are doing their work. Isnít Google putting into place keyword-related ads to better suit your preference? Trust the authority, too. They approve all circulating ads, or at least those we often see. And most of all, trust the advertisers. We are mutually dependent; we need them for our TV shows, and they need our money votes.
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