I took a class this semester called media in a diverse society. It started out kind of boring with the history of radio and TV and all that. Around magazines and books it started to pick up, but maybe that’s because I find those to be more interesting. It pointed out some stuff that I already knew like for each industry there are about four or five major players that own 80 percent of the whole industry, but it still kind of drilled that a little more. Then we got to advertising, which was by far the most interesting thing that we’ve talked about and that I’ve learned about this semester.
I don’t really want it to seem like consumers get to have this victim mentality or like companies are all to blame, but when you don’t even know the rules, it makes it a little harder to play the game. These companies play dirty and we don’t even have a clue. We think we have the freedom of choice, but at every turn the person with the most money is digging into every crevice in our mind and putting their logo, the want for that product, the craving there. And as consumers, we’re totally defenseless because we don’t even know that it’s there. It’s called subliminal advertising and supposedly it was declared illegal in 1958, but its 2012 and I’m learning about it. When I first read about this in my book it might seem like it wasn’t that big of a deal. It said: it refers to hidden or disguised print and visual messages that allegedly register in the subconscious and fool people into buying products. I was like yeah, okay, sure. It’s kind of like a coca-cola can on the desk. You’re not really paying attention to it, but it’s there and it might kind of make you subconsciously hungry for a coke. Got it. But no. That’s not it. Not entirely, anyway.
I used this video because it had the most examples of what I mean when people say subconscious advertising, when it’s hidden, not just when they put it off to the side. I tried to find a video with more variety of subjects, but it seems the most common subject is sex because it sells. You associate these products with sex, so when you think about it then you also think about the product, too. You don’t have to watch the whole thing, but as long as you get the gist.
This is one of the videos they played for us in class. It an experiment with two people in the ad agency and how they fall prey to subliminal advertising. I thought it was interesting, but it’s worth noting that the guy who made who did the experiment is Derren Brown and he’s a famous hypnotist, mentalist, etc.
I used this video last because it’s interesting, but it’s just a different version of the first video, except it talks only about McDonalds.