The Instigator
wierdman
Pro (for)
Losing
3 Points
The Contender
CD-Host
Con (against)
Winning
10 Points

Alcohol advertisement should be banned due to insufficient information

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
CD-Host
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/6/2011 Category: Health
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 25,337 times Debate No: 17802
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (3)

 

wierdman

Pro

Thank you for accepting

This shall be a regular debate with three rounds

Round one: intro

Round two: case

Round three: cx, conclution.
CD-Host

Con

I'd like to thank wierdman for the opportunity to debate.

I'm a little unclear if this is meant to be a 2 round format without an initial round, or not, so I'll keep this round brief and wait for weirdman's affirmative case.

I will however want some specific related to the topic. What information is insufficient exactly? I assume that means the health effects of alcohol in which case I can't see how the information can possibly be seen as insufficient. Alcohol and its influence on health are frankly one of the most studied phenomena we know of. The national institute of health maintains an entire institute National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism with information on the effects of alcohol (http://www.niaaa.nih.gov...)

I can see how one can make the case the alcohol advertising boosts consumption and alcohol consumption is negative. I can not not see how one can make the case that we as a society have a particularly high level of ignorance about the effects of alcohol.

So my only request would be to focus on where we lack information, in keeping with the topic statement, rather than a case which amounts to "alcohol is bad".

I look forward to hearing the case.
Debate Round No. 1
wierdman

Pro

i comend my opponent for not only accepting the debate, but giving a brief look at his believes towards this topic.

The insufficient belief been the information provided in the advertisement and the effect of these advertisement towards the society. i do agree that we can extend the debate to talk of how the advertisement boost alcohol consumption.

I thank my opponent once again for accepting my debate.

Case: In life one is always prompted to make the right decisions; however There is always a factor that guides or misguides ones decision, this factor been the media. In advertising alcohol, we are not only increasing the publics awareness of this substance, but we are creating a situation in which our young ones are led to think that Alcohol is a good thing.

My first argument would focus mainly on public awareness. Public awareness can come from many different ways; however, a recent study by frontierlifeline states that "electronic media is a powerful means of information and communication to the public, regardless of whichever strata of society they belong to. Media communication is indeed a great leveler and undoubtedly the best means of educating the public" With this been said, We must look at the fact that advertising alcohol does increase its publicity as well as an increase in its usage. By banning the advertisement of alcohol, we are decreasing the Usage of alcohol in our youth as well.

Secondly we must direct our attention to the means of advertisement and the information advertised. Alcohol producers advertise substances that seems appealing to the human senses without telling the viewers the risk associated with this substance. We are not banning alcohol usage as a whole, but banning the advertisement to limit the amount of people who are entices by these beverages. Our young ones would no longer crave the drink that when advertise seems to cure all problems.

Our young ones are naive and easily influenced by the media. the fact that alcohol advertisement are available to these children makes it even more dangerous to continue this practice. Allowing the advertisement of alcohol not only increase there craving for the substance but leads to an early drinking age thus leading to drunk driving and drunken accidents.
Many studies show that teens who are advertised to alcohol are more likely to drink.

In conclusion, alcohol advertisement must be banned for the same reason as cigarettes as it entices the senses of both adults and young children thus leading to the lose of control and judgment. Thank you.

http://www2.potsdam.edu...
http://www.livescience.com...
http://mc2.vicnet.net.au...
http://www.consumeraffairs.com...
CD-Host

Con

I would like to thank my opponent for his opening statement.

I'm going to extract 3 key points and address them below:

1) Advertising leads to an increase in awareness:
2) Recipients of advertising are unaware of the risks.
3) Advertising increases usage.

1) Advertising leads to an increase in awareness:
In advertising alcohol, we are not only increasing the publics awareness of this substance

I'd question strongly whether there is anyone of reasonable intelligence and age who lacks awareness of the substance. In 41 years of life I don't think I've ever met anyone over the age 5 not suffering from severe mental retardation that is unaware of the existence of alcoholic beverages. In terms of this debate I've discovered it is hard to find evidence that awareness is essentially universal, in the same way its hard to find evidence that awareness of the existence of cars is essentially universal. I'm going to assert as a point of contention that while advertising may be intended to influence a person's view of the desirability of alcohol consumption or to encourage them to increase the quantity of their consumption, it has no effect on the their awareness that alcohol exists.

In particular when we are using the word "alcohol" in this context we mean ethanol, ethyl alcohol. The most common way that ethanol is produced on earth is as a waste product of anaerobic burning of most sugars on earth. For example glucose ( C6H12O6) is what most non-energy producing (essentially non plant) cells on earth use as their primary energy source. Animals quite literally convert any other form of energy into glucose prior to burning it.

Glucose can only be used 3 ways be organisms on earth:

cellular respiration which is the reaction all animals use for an energy source,... burning glucose plus oxygen to produce energy:

C6H12O6 + 6 O2 6 CO2 + 6 H2O

The second most common reaction is fermentation. And prior to the existence of animals, that is being that use oxygen to burn sugar, the most common way glucose was burned on earth via. the fermentation reaction:

C6H12O6 2C2H5OH + 2CO2

where C2H5OH is ethanol. Fermentation is the obvious reaction without oxygen, and while there is 3rd reaction it is much rarer [see note 1]. There is no place on this planet, no cubic inch of soil that does not contain bacteria that evolved prior to the emergence of high levels of oxygen and that 2nd reaction is what those bacteria do with glucose. Any society trying to get food from plants, which is obviously every society, will inevitably and very quickly see bacteria eating sugars and producing ethanol. In short, everyone knows about bread, therefore everyone knows about yeast and glucose per the fermentation reaction is what yeasts eat.

Now of course one could argue that just because all societies must inevitably know about ethanol doesn't mean all individuals do. And I suspect that's true. But lets keep track off all the activities such an individual would need to avoid:

a) Church services, since wine is crucial to communion.
b) Most forms of celebratory meals.
c) Other cultural events which involve alcohol, like baseball.
d) Baking in any form.
e) Having fruit rot.

I'm going to assert that no one manages to avoid all that in our society who is liable to be influence by advertising. So I'm going to ask pro in the cross-x for any evidence what-so-ever that knowledge of alcohol is not essentially universal.


2) Recipients of advertising are unaware of the risks.
Alcohol producers advertise substances that seems appealing to the human senses without telling the viewers the risk associated with this substance.

This second claim is related to the first. That advertisers fail to disclose risks. The pro case was never specific as to what these risks and what level of ignorance exists. I'm being put into the position of responding to a vague affirmative.

DARE is active in US schools and one can see the list of risks (http://www.dare.com...) in their curriculem. It would help to respond to a specific risk but: School, television, movies, books, culture are all educating young people about the risks of drinking. Again I'd like to see some data that children who are old enough to be likely to begin drinking are in fact ignorant of risks of drinking.
I see no case being made for ignorance here.

3) Advertising increases usage.
Allowing the advertisement of alcohol not only increase there craving for the substance but leads to an early drinking age thus leading to drunk driving and drunken accidents.

Now this one is interesting. This is a very strong claim that advertising induces a craving even in children who had previously not been drinking and this leads to earlier drinking age leads to drunk driving and drunken accidents. Fascinating theory with 0 evidence presented to support it.
  • First off the United States Senate addressed this issue of the effects of alcohol advertising on non-drinkers and found that they were not influenced at all (Congressional Record, May 20, 1985).
  • The University of Texas did a follow up study and concluded the same thing, that the level of advertising had 0 impact on the percentage of drinkers in the population. That is advertising had no effect at all in causing people to take up drinking. (Wilcox, G. B., Franke, G. R., and Vacker, B. Alcohol Beverage Advertising and Consumption in the United States: 1964-1984. Austin, TX: University of Texas, Department of Advertising Working Paper, January, 1986, p. III; Sanders, James. Alcohol Advertisements Do Not Encourage Alcohol Abuse Among Teens. In: Wekesser, Carol (ed.) Alcoholism. San Diego, CA: Greenhaven Press, 1994. Pp. 132-135, p. 133.)
  • In terms of advertising effect on traffic fatalities that's also been found to be negatively correlated. It appears that higher levels of social acceptance and awareness, create social structures that allow intoxicated people to not have to drive ( Shoup, Harold, and Dobday, Christine. Alcohol Advertising Restrictions without Due Cause. In: Engs, Ruth C. (ed.) Controversies in the Addictions Field. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt, 1990. Pp. 130-135, p. 131)
  • There are additional dozen or so citations available at http://www2.potsdam.edu...
_________

This is my only round for cross examination.


1) Do you have any study showing that advertising in western civilization, or any civilization for that matter, increases awareness of the existence of alcohol in societies? That is con is asserting that awareness is essentially universal do you have any evidence this is not true?

2) What specific risk that children are likely to encounter from drinking do you think they have not been informed of by the time they are ready to start drinking. Do you have data to support this?

3) What evidence do you have for the causal chain: advertising induces a craving even in children who had previously not been drinking and this leads to earlier drinking age leads to drunk driving and drunken accidents, exists? How do you explain country by country variations with respect to advertising dollars and drunk driving? How do you explain the data showing that alcohol advertising has no impact on non drinkers?

_________

Notes:
[1] There is one more known glucose reaction, glycolsis which evolved much later and is rarer. The phrasing for this most readers would be familiar with is "anaerobic exercise". Since this debate is about advertising and not chemistry, I'm avoiding details as to why this third reaction is so much less common than the other two though a diagram of the complexity of the reaction: http://upload.wikimedia.org... I think makes it evident from a common sense perspective. I agree the sequence: aerobic burning (i.e. using oxygen), fermentation and glycolsis in terms of relative frequency has not been proven and agree to do so in round 3 upon request.

Debate Round No. 2
wierdman

Pro

THank you for posting your case.

My opponent states tries to counter my case by stating "I'd question strongly whether there is anyone of reasonable intelligence and age who lacks awareness of the substance"; however, at no point in my case did i state that people where unaware of this substance, i simply stated that alcohol entices the viewers. My opponent went further in stating that "it has no effect on the their awareness that alcohol exists." This statement is absolutely false. When looking at the world today, we find that technology such as television has completely taken over our children and adolescent life, now these children might have known about alcohol to some extent, but when presented with alcohol advertisement, we find that these same kids now know the names of ten different brands of alcohol and why each brand differ from one another.
"Research suggests that children and adolescents tend to learn more about alcohol from television and beer advertising than from more balanced sources such as parents, leaving them more knowledgeable about brands of beer than about potential health risks associated with drinking.

The Role of Interpretation Processes and Parental Discussion in the Media's Effects on Adolescents' Use of Alcohol, 2000." (http://www.media-awareness.ca...)
In his first point, my opponent list several social events in which alcohol is present as well as giving us a formula in which ethanol is created, however interesting this may seem, it has noting to do with advertising alcohol and why we "should not" ban alcohol.

"The pro case was never specific as to what these risks and what level of ignorance exists. " My opponent makes this statement in his second point. When alcohol advertisement does not present us the viewers with any facts as to what the risk of alcohol poses to yourself and the society. It fails to mention the chain of problems associated with drinking such as accidents, loss of judgement and unsafe sex. Above we find a fine example of an advertisement that rather than informing people, it encourages people to go out and drink.

Finally My opponent tackle in which he deems a "Fascinating theory with 0 evidence presented to support it." My opponent goes on in giving several evidence of his own in an effort to prove me wrong; however, as you probably noted, all his evidence are outdated. This is a new generation and with every new generation, comes a new habit/behavior.
Evidence:

"Researchers are examining other environmental influences as well, such as the impact of the media. Today alcohol is widely available and aggressively promoted through television, radio, billboards, and the Internet. Researchers are studying how young people react to these advertisements. In a study of 3rd, 6th, and 9th graders, those who found alcohol ads desirable were more likely to view drinking positively and to want to purchase products with alcohol logo" (http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov... ( January 2006)

Here in the UK, psychologists at the University of
Hertford have been investigating children's responses to
TV alcohol advertising (Nash et al, 2009). They showed
that children as young as 7 years old like alcohol
advertisements on TV – especially ones with humour,
cartoon format, animals and special characters. Secondly,
recent study in Australia (Winter et al, 2008) found that
children and under-age teenagers are currently exposed
to "unacceptably high levels of alcohol advertising on
television" (presumably because they are watching
TV after the 9pm watershed). However, it should be
emphasised, as noted in the introduction, that cartoon
format, animals and special characters that could be
appealing to those under the legal drinking age, are not
permitted by EU, US or Australasian regulatory bodies
for example.
As Smith and Foxcroft conclude, "we now have stronger
empirical evidence to inform the policy debate on the
impact of alcohol advertising on young people."
This article is available from: http://www.biomedcentral....
com/1471-2458/9/51

Youth who saw more alcohol advertisements
on average drank more (each additional advertisement
seen increased the number of drinks consumed by 1%
[event rate ratio, 1.01; 95% confidence interval, 1.01-
1.02]). Youth in markets with greater alcohol advertising
expenditures drank more (each additional dollar spent
per capita raised the number of drinks consumed by 3%
[event rate ratio, 1.03; 95% confidence interval, 1.01-
1.05]). Examining only youth younger than the legal
drinking age of 21 years, alcohol advertisement exposure
and expenditures still related to drinking. Youth in
markets with more alcohol advertisements showed increases
in drinking levels into their late 20s, but drinking
plateaued in the early 20s for youth in markets with
fewer advertisements.
Conclusion: Alcohol advertising contributes to increased
drinking among youth.
Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2006;160:18-24

I belief this is enough evidence to prove my case to be a true one.

CX:
1) i bvelieve i have provided enough evidence to prove this theory.

2)Drunk driving, loss of judgement e.t.c. The Youtube videos.

3) Evidence above.

CX2:
What are the benefits of alcohol advertisement.

Do these advertisement affect kids view on alcohol (include evidence)

Can you provide at least one alcohol commercial in which the risk associated with alcohol are presented. (by the alcohol producers not anti-alcoholic movements.)

In conclusion, my opponent tries to counter all my arguments as to why alcohol advertisement should be banned; however, he failed to present a single reason as to why alcohol advertisement should not be banned thus failing to meent his burden of proof.
CD-Host

Con

Well I guess we are approaching the end of the debate, I'd like to congratulate wireman and wish him luck in the voting.

This was the first round were there was some evidence presented and the evidence supported my case. The second citation in R3 from weirdman was the NIAAA.

"Researchers are examining other environmental influences as well, such as the impact of the media. Today alcohol is widely available and aggressively promoted through television, radio, billboards, and the Internet. Researchers are studying how young people react to these advertisements. In a study of 3rd, 6th, and 9th graders, those who found alcohol ads desirable were more likely to view drinking positively and to want to purchase products with alcohol logo" (corrected link: http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov... )

He dropped the very next sentence though, "Research is mixed, however, on whether these positive views of alcohol actually lead to underage drinking." The reason of course is that his own quote supports the case I made that there isn't really strong evidence tying alcohol advertising to alcohol consumption for non drinkers. The paragraph from the NIAAA study that he cited is even worse in context. NIAAA is making a list of 6 factors that lead to underage drinking in order of importance. That paragraph occurs in the 6th, Environmental Aspects. The previous 5 were:

1) Risk-Taking (characteristics of people that age)
2) Expectancy. Whether they had previous had good experiences and drinking experiences age 11-14.
3) Sensitivity and tolerance to alcohol. Essentially young bodies get more of a euphoric lift and less of the negative consequences. Though they need to consume more.
4) Behavioral problems and emotional problems.
5) Heredity.

That is 5 characteristics none of which is influenced by advertising and a 6th where the NIAAA lists factors like influence of parents and peers as the primary driver and dismisses advertising as playing much of a role.

This is indicative of the affirmative case. Wild supposition about ties between advertising and under age drinking that are either contradicted or unable to be determined by the available evidence. The data is again clear, consumption has been falling while advertising has been increasing:

His own source shows falling consumption among teens: http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov...

And here is a graph of the tie between per capita consumption and advertising for all persons: http://www2.potsdam.edu...

Further Pro ignored completely his statements about ignorance and in this final round turned this into a policy debate. As if the topic were, "under age drinking is bad so let's ban alcohol". But that is not the topic, the topic has centered on claims like the fact that people needed advertising to be aware of the substance or that advertising leads to cravings.

There was also a claim of some sort of universal ban on advertising targeting minors. "However, it should be emphasised, as noted in the introduction, that cartoon format, animals and special characters that could be appealing to those under the legal drinking age, are not permitted by EU, US or Australasian regulatory bodies for example". I'm not sure where this came from, but again factually this is not true for most states at all. There are no federal rules, this Pew study breaks down the state restrictions: (http://www.pewtrusts.org...)

There was one relevant quote in round 3 which showed a correlation between youth drinking and advertising, "Youth who saw more alcohol advertisements on average drank more (each additional advertisement seen increased the number of drinks consumed by 1% [event rate ratio, 1.01; 95% confidence interval, 1.01-1.02])".

Here is a link to the original article (http://archpedi.ama-assn.org... ). As can be clearly seen when the quote is read in context this is part of a study that is kicking data up to the NIH for a summary report. Similar to the reports that we've been quoting that show some slight effects and mixed evidence.

This particular study by the author's own admission should not hang on its own:

a) The study had huge methodological problems with about a 1 in 4 participation rate and high drop out.
b) The study found a slight correlation
c) The study found massive longitudinal changes between markets that may have overwhelmed any advertising influenced effects.

In summary: No clear case was ever presented and the hints of a clear case that were presented were contradicted by the evidence, the research and the leading authorities in the field.

Thank you for your time and attention.

Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by Yerzhan_20110292 5 years ago
Yerzhan_20110292
It's not a secret that mass-media has a big influence on our modern life. People wants "this pair of boots, because it's D&G" and "that chewing gym, because it protects our teeth and moreover some famous actor chewed it" and etc. In the majority of times, who are the victims of an advertisement? Young people. Why it's necessary to show them properly information? Because this is nation's future. When a sport guy drinks beer (!) which doesn't consist an alcohol (!) mass opinion forms in a way that it's possible to drink an alchogol (because the fact that it doesn't consist an alcochol is usually written with small symbols in the bottom of the screen) and be a muscled sportguy or beautiful model. This scheme works on the advertisment of cigarettes also. That's why I agree that it's better to abandon such kind of advertasing.
Posted by wierdman 5 years ago
wierdman
just post the video link and it automatically becomes a video.
Posted by CD-Host 5 years ago
CD-Host
Now that the debate is over, can someone explain to me how you embed graphics and video in your debate. I had several charts I wanted to debate and all I could do is link.
Posted by 000ike 5 years ago
000ike
very interesting topic: tracked.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by larztheloser 5 years ago
larztheloser
wierdmanCD-HostTied
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: S and G should be obvious. Pro argued people don't know about alcohol, con argued they did. It would be good to know con's alternative explanation, in the form of constructive material. However, con did convincingly rebut pro. Neg win. Sources is for con using pro's sources against him. Pro could have shown why alcohol advertising gives different information about alcohol than, say, rotten fruit. Pro should also justify when we ban stuff and when we don't.
Vote Placed by DetectableNinja 5 years ago
DetectableNinja
wierdmanCD-HostTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro argued fairly well for the banning of alcohol advertisements initially. However, Con presented a stronger case, poking holes and in the end effectively negating the resolution.
Vote Placed by darkhearth 5 years ago
darkhearth
wierdmanCD-HostTied
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Total points awarded:31 
Reasons for voting decision: pro focused on the case whereas con simply contradicted his claims without giving any reason as to why alcohol advertisement is good. On the other hand con did do an excellent job in contradicting and trying to weaken pro's case. This has been an intriguing debate.