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Tobacco Product Placements on the Downturn

Product Placement News
January 2, 2009

Moviegoers are accustomed to the “no animals were harmed” disclaimer at the end of most movies. But 2009 dawns a new age for disclaimers, product placement disclaimers in particular.

From now on, the screen will also flash “The depictions of tobacco smoking contained in this film are based on artistic consideration and are not intended to promote tobacco consumption.” Warner Bros. films add, “No tobacco companies paid for produc0t placement.”

Most experts conclude that studios don’t want to be associated with the promotion of bad health practices. But, what does this mean for the tobacco manufacturers? While putting disclaimers is an exercise of corporate social responsibility, will it be effective?

In Singapore, cigarette packs are imprinted with awful images of lung cancer. However, these warnings do not sway “die-hard” smokers. The bottom line is when studios show characters smoking, it still encourages smoking. The new disclaimer simply washes the hands of the studios and makes cigarette smoking look “cooler.”

 

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