Tobacco Advertising Ethics

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Ethics is a complex subject that is very relevant in the globalized world we live in today. It can be said that governments are often faced with “ethical handling of actual or apparent conflicts of interest” (Carpenter, Taylor, Erdogan, 2009, page 78). This is because they have to protect the public from the dangers of products and services while at the same time, enjoy the stream of taxes or license fees emanating from their consumption. In this case analysis I will be addressing the arguments for and against banning tobacco advertising in India. The conflict of interest that the government of India had in deciding about this ban and finally I will state my own personal opinion about this matter. Arguments in favor of the ban on tobacco advertising…show more content…
It was claimed in the pro tobacco media by an Editor name Amit Sarkar “that freedom and risks are inextricable” (ICMR, 2010, para’ 15) and therefore stopping the consumption of advertising of tobacco is equal to infringing on the public’s freedoms in a democracy. It was further claimed that since tobacco wasn’t made illegal, how can its advertising be made illegal? The purpose of advertising tobacco was a service to consumers allowing them to decide which product and brand to buy, and not as claimed by the supporters of the ban, namely to convince the young and the non-smokers into using tobacco. The opposition to the advertising ban used a research carried out by the Indian Market Research Bureau (IMRB) that showed that 49% of individuals surveyed claimed starting to smoke to have a first-hand experience and additional 24% cited peer pressure as the reason. This piece of evidence showed that tobacco adverts did not play any part in any respondent beginning to…show more content…
The devastating health effects and the costs involved in treating the affected, further intensified the internal conflict within the Indian government and made the decision to ban tobacco advertising a difficult one. My opinion on what governments should do in regards to tobacco advertising My personal opinion is that tobacco advertising should be heavily regulated and any advert must portray the damage done by the use of the product. Companies should be allowed to advertise, but at the same time they should be honest and informative about the consequences of using their products. Conclusion When coming to summarize this case analysis, one cannot escape the feeling of how charged an issue this is. Arguments for and against tobacco advertising seems to sway the pendulum back and forth. However, the main issue at hand which a government has to give priority when coming to decide such a question, is the ethical aspect and the good of its people. I believe that the duty of care that a government owes its citizens, dictates that such a hazard as tobacco consumption poses, requires strict regulation, intervention and
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