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Do you consider advertising to be a form of propaganda?

Some people believe that advertising is a form of propaganda as it aims to persuade people to buy a certain product to make them feel a certain way. Propaganda is communication for the purpose of persuasion so they are linked in some way, however some people argue that advertising is more about product placement rather than using propaganda techniques. What are your thoughts?

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    Oct 17 2011: Sure, it's propaganda. To say it's anything else is spin. How we judge and define propaganda is up to us. Could be good, could be bad. The most disturbing trend in recent years is product placement replacing commercials. The upside is less commercials due to DVR's, etc., the downside is a constant, subtle manipulation during programming. I'm looking forward to the day we come up with a new paradigm for advertising - and I can't think of one, no matter how hard I try.
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    Oct 17 2011: As with everyone else the answer is yes.

    Not to sound pessimistic I'll argue that at least in the U.S. most forms of propaganda is bad (or one should be really skeptical about it), being that it really yields bad results. It extends beyond that of politics since we see many commercials that advertise their products etc. Despite the perspective that you take on this topic, propaganda (or as you will call it) advertisement all comes down to one thing: "Control of the public mind". who ever can control the public interest pretty much have control of the country and this is where politics and business/economics are linked.

    I am sure there might be exceptions (like those human societies commercials but it still comes down to controlling ones mind/interest and to get you to do what they want you to do).

    I think it depends on how impressionable ones mind is and how critically one can take information.
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      Oct 17 2011: Unfortunately very few teachers teach critical thinking in the U.S. My students come to me and when I ask them a simple question like "What is your favorite movie?" they can give me a title, but they cannot explain the reason why they like it. This is something I work on all year with them. I challenge them to think critically and try to raise their consciousness. I use the socratic method of not giving them answers, but asking them more questions until they can figure out the answer from what they know. It takes a lot of work, but this kind of approach really pays off in the end as my students scores reflect that it works.
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        Oct 17 2011: Very very true and good for you. I respect teachers who go outside the systematic teaching structure of their institution.

        We need more of that but the last thing that is wanted by the government is a society of critical thinkers. I see a problem with this and its sad that most people are obvious to this type of stuff.

        What perplexes me is how fearful people are of such a society. I mean what society in human history was destructive because the people were "too reasonable" or "too critical"?
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    Oct 17 2011: Yes. Advertising is the largest propaganda being employed in today's world. It is the most constant source of propaganda. At it's root it is meant to influence you. All well-done propaganda is basically trying to sell you on something, whether it is a good or an idea.