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Advertising ETHICS AND


Presented By :
Group II
II B Com ‘C’
- The words "ethics"
Ø In Latin is called "ethic us"
Ø in Greek is called "ethikos"
has come from the word ethos meaning characters or manners.

- Ethics refers to the science of morals, a treatise on this moral principles

recognized rules of conduct.

- As per business firms, ethics is the study of good and evil, Right and wrong and
just and unjust actions of businessmen.

- Applied ethics is a field of ethics that deals with ethical questions in many fields
such as medical, legal and business ethics

- Business ethics is a form of applied ethics that examines ethical principles and
moral or ethical problems that arise in a business environment. It applies to all aspects
of business conduct and is relevant to the conduct of individuals and business
organizations as a whole..
ØAdvertising Ethics is part of basic ethics in action series.
ØIt is an applied philosophical analysis of the nature of advertising in
general and of specific ethical issues that arise in advertising.
ØIncludes case studies and refers to current professional codes and
practices in the Advertising Industry and contemporary ethical theory.
ØThe values that govern the actions of and individual or group.
Not all issues can be regulated.
A marketing or promotion action may be legal but not considered
Marketers must make decisions regarding the appropriateness of their
Arguments for or against advertising

Arguments favouring Advertising:-

ü Provides information.
ü Encourages a higher standard of living.
ü Creates jobs and helps new firms enter a market.
ü Promotes competition in the marketplace.

Arguments against Advertising:-

X Creates needs and wants among consumers.
X Is more propaganda than information.
X Promotes materialism, insecurity and greed.

q A systematic and structured applied philosophical analysis of the nature of

• An identification and evaluation of specific ethical issues
• Provides students with a text that is theoretically sophisticated but practical
at the same time.
q Comprehensive coverage of the ethics of advertising.
• Gives students knowledge of moral philosophy and professional and
practical ethics as well as knowledge and experience of advertising
q A rational and ethical decision-making model for identifying and evaluating ethical
problems in advertising.
• Encourages more ethical advertising thinking and practice by giving
students a better understanding of advertising ethics specifically, and ethics
more generally.
Ø If the media are to be correctly employed, it is essential that all who
use them know the principles of the moral order and apply them
faithfully in this domain.

Ø The media of social communications have two options, and only two.
Either they help human persons to grow in their understanding and
practice of what is true and good, or they are destructive forces in
conflict with human well being. That is entirely true of advertising.

Ø Those who commission, prepare or disseminate advertising — are

morally responsible for what they seek to move people to do; and this
is a responsibility also shared by publishers, broadcasting executives,
and others in the communications world.

Ø Those who give commercial or political endorsements, to the extent

that they are involved in the advertising process.
Ø It is morally wrong to use manipulative, exploitative, corrupt and corrupting
methods of persuasion and motivation.
Ø The techniques involved here include showing certain products or forms of
behavior in superficially glamorous settings associated with superficially
glamorous people; in extreme cases, it may even involve the use of subliminal

We can identify several moral principles that are particularly relevant to

Ø Truthfulness
Ø The dignity of the human person

Advertising has its own forms of expression, conventions and forms of
stylization, and these must be taken into account when discussing truthfulness.
People take for granted some rhetorical and symbolic exaggeration in
advertising; within the limits of recognized and accepted practice, this can be
The proper exercise of the right to information demands that the content of
what is communicated be true and, within the limits set by justice and charity,
should be complete. The obligation to avoid any manipulation of truth for any


Advertising can violate the dignity of the human person both through its
content — what is advertised, the manner in which it is advertised — and
through the impact it seeks to make upon its audience and all these
advertisements appeals to lust, vanity, envy and greed, and of techniques that
manipulate and exploit human weakness.
This problem is especially acute where particularly vulnerable groups or
classes of persons are concerned: children and young people, the elderly, the
poor, the culturally disadvantaged.
Advertising as untruthful

Ø Deceptive Advertising
General Mistrust of Advertising and Among Consumers. Many Do Not
Perceive Ads As Honest or Believable
Abuses Involving Sales Promotions Such As Contests, Sweepstakes,
Premium Offers
Unethical And/or Deceptive Practices Involving Mail Order, Telemarketing
and Other Forms of Direct Marketing
Internet Scams and Abuses

Ø Advertising as Offensive or in Bad Taste

Objections to Advertising Of Certain Products
Use of Sexual Appeals And/or Nudity
Use of Shock Ads

Ø Advertising and Children

Children's TV Watching Behavior
Children between ages 2-11 watch on average 21.5 hours of TV per week
and may see 22,000 commercials per year
Television is an important source of information for children about products
• Social responsibility Advertising philosophies, policies, procedures, and
actions that have the enhancement of society’s welfare as a primary

Ecological issue:
Advertising that fosters a lavish life style which wastes resources and
despoils the environment, offends against important ecological concerns.

Authentic and Integral human development issue:

Advertising that reduces human progress to acquiring material goods and
cultivating a lavish life style expresses a false, destructive vision of the human
person harmful to individuals and society alike.
Role of Advertising in the Economy:
Ø Making Consumers Aware of Products and Services
Ø Providing Consumers With Information to Use to Make Purchase
Ø Encouraging Consumption and Fostering Economic Growth

Economic Impact of Advertising:

Ø Effects on Consumer Choice
• Differentiation
• Brand Loyalty
Ø Effects on Competition
• Barriers to entry
• Economies of scale
Ø Effects on product costs and prices
• Advertising as an expense that increases the cost of products
Benefits of Advertising
Economic Benefits of Advertising:
Advertising can play an important role in the process by which an
economic system guided by moral norms and responsive to the common good
contributes to human development.
ü Provides and conforms the moral standards based upon integral human
development and the common good.
ü The most efficient instrument for utilizing resources and effectively
responding to needs of a socio-economic kind.
ü It is an useful tool for sustaining honest and ethically responsible
competition that contributes to economic growth.
ü It helps in informing people about the availability of rationally desirable
new products and services and improvements in existing ones.
ü It contribute to the creation of new jobs and higher incomes.
Political Benefits of Advertising:
Political advertising can make a contribution to democracy analogous to its
contribution to economic well being guided by moral norms.
ü It helps to counteract tendencies toward the monopolization of power
on the part of oligarchies and special interests.
ü It can make its contribution by informing people about the ideas and
policy proposals of parties and candidates.
Cultural Benefits of Advertising:
Advertising supports material of excellent intellectual, aesthetic and moral
quality presented with the public interest.
ü It contributes to the betterment of society by uplifting and inspiring
people and motivating them.
ü It can brighten lives simply by being witty, tasteful and entertaining.

Moral and Religious Benefits of Advertising:

Social institutions use advertising to communicate their messages that
educate and motivate people in a variety of beneficial ways.
ü Advertising helps in spreading messages of faith, patriotism, tolerance,
compassion and neighbourly service, of charity toward the needy.
ü Advertising helps in communicating messages concerning health and
education to the people
Harms of Advertising
Economic Harms of Advertising:
Advertising can betray its role as a source of information by
misrepresentation and by withholding relevant facts.
It is used not simply to inform but to persuade and
motivate to convince people to act on the basis of
irrational motives
Consumer attitudes and life-styles can be created which
are objectively improper and often damages the physical
and spiritual health.
They waste their resources and neglect their real needs,
and genuine development falls behind.
The dignity and welfare of society's poorer and weaker
members are at stake.
Harms of Political Advertising:
Political advertising can support and assist the working
of the democratic process, but it also can obstruct it.
Political advertising seeks to distort the views and
records of opponents and unjustly attacks their
Advertising appeals more to people's emotions and
base instincts like racial and ethnic prejudice
Cultural Harms of Advertising:
Advertising also can have a corrupting influence upon
culture and cultural values their peoples by reflecting those
prevalent traditional values.
It helps to set aside high artistic and moral standards
and lapse into superficiality, tawdriness and moral
It ignores the educational and social needs of certain
segments of the audience, who do not match the
demographic patterns.
The way advertising treats women and the exploitation
of women, both in and by advertising, is a frequent and
deplorable abuse.

Moral and Religious Harms of Advertising:

Advertising can be tasteful and in conformity with high moral
standards, and occasionally even morally uplifting, but it also can
be vulgar and morally degrading.
The communications media have made pornography and
violence accessible to a vastly expanded audience,
including young people and even children.
Commercial advertisers sometimes include religious themes
or use religious images or personages to sell products which
involves exploiting religion.
Advertising is used to promote products and inculcate
attitudes and forms of behavior contrary to moral norms.
v Reputable companies and advertising agencies avoid telling
lies. They realize the cost of being caught.

v A dent in trust can prove to be much costlier than the failure of

an ad campaign or for that matter, even a brand. The challenge
before advertisers and agencies is to ensure that ads reflect our

v We must endeavor to see that "advertising" does not remain a

dirty word.

v Moreover, for the reasons and in the ways sketched here, we

believe advertising can, and often does, play a constructive role
in economic growth, in the exchange of information and ideas,
and in the fostering of solidarity among individuals and groups.

v Yet it also can do, and often does, grave harm to individuals
and to the common good.
Thank you
Mahesh K Reddy
Akshay GowdaG
Sunil YadavS