Does Advertising Create Artificial Wants ? Essay

2305 WordsApr 17, 201310 Pages
Does advertising create artificial wants? Your answer should discuss John Kenneth Galbraith’s “dependence effect” and F.A. Hayek’s response. Advertising is a way of promoting products and services. Advertisements inform consumers about new products and at the same time try to get their attention and sell the products. Advertising makes it easier for new products to enter the market and encourages market competition. Galbraith goes against the view that the consumer is the sovereign. He argues that salesmanship and advertising are creating people’s wants and desires. Galbraith argues that there is a difference between what the individual originally wants and what wants are artificially forced on him. In the process of producing to fulfill the wants, the market arrived at the point of creating wants by producing. These artificial wants were created by the use of advertisements. Hayek shows the non sequitur of Galbraith’s Theory. Galbraith clearly forgot an important aspect of human nature. Humans are able to decide for their own actions and to take decisions without being manipulated to. He didn’t consider the variety of people and their wants. Most importantly with his claims he denies the existence of free will. Advertising does not have a good reputation. There is an impression that ads and salesmen will persuade us to buy products and services we do not need. It sounds pretty absurd to me that someone might have such an influence to make us buy things we do not want. It is true that ads are full of colors and special effects. They are clearly trying to do their best to appeal to our emotions. It is also known that they are enhancing the qualities of the products. They are not telling all the truth, they are telling the good parts of it. But to go from here to the opinion that advertising is “a weapon directed at people who are helpless to resist”, it

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