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The power of suggestion - TV ads are a major influence on children's 'wishlists'

British children watch in the region of 2.5 hours of television per day

The conclusion is clear - more television makes children more materialistic.

The University of Hertfordshire has just published a report on the effect of TV advertising on under the under seven age-group.

Much of the research looked at the impact of pre-Christmas promotional campaigns on the content of the childrens’ requests to Father Christmas. Findings indicated that youngsters who were exposed to higher levels of commercial television put significantly more items on their lists - some five six items on average, as opposed to just one - and quoted specific manufacturer brand names, the most popular being Action Men, Barbies and Furbies.

 

However, those children who watched adverts alone were inclined to refer to even higher levels of brand names - indicating a tendency for them to be more receptive to the power of suggestion without an adult present to distract them from the powerful sales messages being put out.

 

The conclusion is clear - more television makes children more materialistic. Until they hit 11 or 12 that is - the same research showed that cynicism tends to set in around this age and that TV advertising has much less of an influence once children get older

 

 According to an earlier survey, British children watch in the region of 2.5 hours of television per day, with 60% of 6/7 year olds having their own tv set in their bedroom. 

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