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Accessible Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Mouton 2018

13. Harm in Media Marketing: the Branding of Values

Edward H. Spence

Abstract

This purpose of this chapter is to offer an ethical analysis and evaluation of the strategy and practice in advertising and marketing of associating brands with values so as to render those brands more marketable and ultimately more saleable, but in that process devaluing those values. To that end, the methodology employed, as befits the discipline of moral philosophy and applied ethics, is conceptual analysis supported by sound rational arguments. This analysis will attempt to demonstrate that the association of brands with values is ethically problematic. A second related but independent purpose, one not pursued in this chapter, is to establish the initial motivation and basis for a further empirical investigation, through interdisciplinary research, of the ethical impact that the association of brands with values has on consumers, and especially on young people and children.

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