Positive alcohol consumption messages on TV shows wipe off negative messages

March 26th, 2009 - 2:23 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, Mar 26 (ANI): Positive depiction of alcohol consumption in TV shows undermines its negative depictions, according to a new study.

Study leaders Dale W. Russell and Cristel A. Russell, at the Prevention Research Center, claim that television series often portray mixed messages about alcohol, but the positive and negative messages are shown differently.

They have revealed that their study was based on a content analysis of prime-time television series from the 2004-05 season.

The researchers observed that the primary, more central, alcohol message was often associated with negative elements like crime, addiction, or lowered job performance.

On the other hand, subtler visual messages were almost always associated with positive outcomes, such as having fun or partying.

Thus, the positive messages might undermine any negative messages.

“Policymakers and parents need to remain vigilant in monitoring alcohol depictions, especially product placements, given the current environment of self-regulation of the alcohol industry’s marketing/advertising efforts,” concluded the authors.

Owing to television’s effect on the audience’s attitudes and behaviours, the prevalence of alcohol messages in the content of television programs raises concerns over their likely impact on audiences, especially young ones.

The researchers are continuing with their efforts to study how such messages are processed and the consequences they have on viewers’ beliefs about alcohol and drinking behaviours.

The study has been published in the Journal of Consumer Affairs. (ANI)

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