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Summer 2007 News                                                                                                                 Newsletter Archives




New Study Shows Power of Branding Kids

A new study in the Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine demonstrates just how effective food marketing is in changing young children's perceptions.  Researchers from Stanford University found that preschool children think that foods that come in a McDonald's wrapper taste better than the exact same food in an unwrapped wrapper.  Study author Dr. Tom Robinson notes that McDonald's branding is so powerful that it actually physically altered the children's perception of taste.

This morning, CCFC's Susan Linn discussed the importance of the study and why we need regulation of food marketing aimed at children on the Today Show.  You can watch the segment by clicking here.

You can also learn more about the study by reading this article from the Associated Press (with a quote from CCFC's Diane Levin



Baby Einstein Debunked

Yesterday, an important new study found that for infants, every hour spent watching baby videos is associated with slower language development - six to eight words less on a standardized vocabulary test than babies who don't watch.  The study, by Frederick J. Zimmerman, Dimitri A. Christakis, and Andrew Metzoff, appears in Journal of Pediatrics.


Previous research suggested that television is not a good medium for teaching language to babies.  Now research shows that infants (ages 8-16 months) who watch baby videos have a slower rate of language acquisition than infants who do not.  Not only is there no evidence that baby videos do any of the things the baby video industry claims they do, but these media may actually be undermining the development of the very skills they claim to foster. 


In 2006, the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood filed a Federal Trade Commission complaint against Baby Einstein, Brainy Baby, and BabyFirstTV for false and deceptive marketing.  That complaint is under review.  If you have not yet done so, please take a moment to urge the FTC to act on our complaint.  The number one reason parents allow babies to watch television and DVDs is the mistaken belief that the programming is educational and/or good for brain development. 



Blackboards, not Billboards:  Massachusetts School Commercialism Bill Advances Out of Committee

Last week, the Massachusetts's Joint Committee on Public Health recommended approval of the nation's strongest school commercialism bill.  H. 489, An Act Relative to the Public Health Impact of Commercialism in Schools, would prohibit advertising on public school grounds.  You can learn more about the bill - including the text of the bill and testimony from CCFC members in support of the legislation - by visiting here.  And if you live in Massachusetts, you'll be hearing from us soon about what you can do to help get this historic legislation passed!



CCFC News Now Available by RSS Feed

CCFC's "In the News" is the most complete and up-to-date archive of articles on marketing to children on the web.  And now it's easier to keep on top of all the news about kids and commercialism by subscribing to CCFC's RSS Feed.  To subscribe, please visit or enter that address into your favorite feed reader.  An informed activist is an effective activist!



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